The Seneca County Drug Task Force conducted a drug-related sting operation Friday with the assistance of area police departments and the Seneca County Sheriff’s Office.

Ryan E. Payne, 34, of Fostoria, was arrested on a charge of trafficking in cocaine, according to a release from Seneca County Drug Task Force-METRICH Enforcement Unit.

According to the release, the task force had received reports of an alleged drug trafficker distributing crack cocaine in the village of Kansas.

Det. Chuck Boyer, of the task force, said the organization began investigating Payne because of those reports from citizens.

“We were told he was selling in Kansas and making deliveries there,” he said.

Boyer said Payne would sell to people in Kansas and then go back home to Fostoria.

“We started digging a little deeper.” he said.

“We were able to purchase from him in Kansas,” he said.

Boyer said Payne was arrested by sheriff’s office deputies immediately after the transaction. He also said Tiffin Police Department and Fostoria Police Department assisted in the operation.

“Due to it being a rural area, we had a large area to cover,” he said. “We needed additional detectives from FPD and TPD for manpower.”

According to the release, additional charges of possession of criminal tools and possession of marijuana are also pending for Payne.

Originally published in the Toledo Blade on December 12, 2015.