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ELIZABETH, Colo. (KDVR) — Elbert County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested two men in connection to a counterfeit money investigation they’ve been conducting for nearly three weeks.

The suspects involved, 43-year-old Nicholas Shawn Mauth and 44-year-old Ryan Tapia Landry of Elizabeth, are brothers-in-law and both are facing multiple charges.

Counterfeit money investigation

On Oct. 24, deputies responded to a Murphy’s Express gas station at 2336 Legacy Cir. and gathered suspect information, including the vehicle they were driving, to begin an investigation into a counterfeit money operation.

Investigators received additional information on Nov. 10 and the next day, the sheriff’s office obtained arrest and search warrants which were executed by the Elbert County SWAT team in the 2300 block of County Road 142. The suspects were apprehended at that location and held during the search.

What was found during the execution of the search warrant

ECSO investigators found a variety of illegal items at the residence including the vehicle used in the initial incident.

“We located numerous weapons, numerous rifles, several handguns, as well as numerous printers, computers … thousands of dollars of counterfeit money,” ECSO Investigations Sergeant Jonathon Rollf said.

The sheriff’s office also said there was evidence of a possible drug lab found at the residence.

“We are investigating drugs, there was a possible drug lab that was located on the property. We had to call additional resources in from outside agencies and we had an overwhelming response,” Rollf said. “We wouldn’t have been able to do it without those agencies. So. It obviously leads into that kind of drug world as well. And one of our suspects is kind of in that.”

Several other agencies assisted ECSO deputies in processing the possible drug lab including CBI, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office hazmat and bomb squad personnel, Elizabeth Fire and the National Guard.

“It’s really rare for this kind of big stuff to happen out in Elbert County, the continued and rapid growth we’re seeing. We’re getting more of the bigger calls and more serious nature crimes that are making their way out here,” Rollf said.

Charges Mauth and Landry are facing

According to the Elbert County Sheriff’s Office, the two are facing charges of:

  • Contributing to the delinquency of a minor
  • Forgery 
  • Conspiracy to commit forgery 
  • Possession of burglary tools 
  • Criminal possession of forgery devices  
  • Criminal possession of a forged instrument  
  • Large capacity magazine charge 
  • Child abuse 

Mauth is also facing charges of possession of a defaced firearm and possession of a dangerous or illegal weapon. They are being held at the Elbert County Jail during the ongoing investigation.

The two could be facing additional charges after testing comes back from the possible drug lab.