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A pound of meth, 30 grams of cocaine, 8 pounds of marijuana, guns and ammo seized in Worthington house search

Both Justin and Monte Phaengdara are scheduled to appear in court Sept. 26.

Monte (right) and Justin PHAENGARA
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WORTHINGTON — Two Worthington residents are facing firearms and drug-related charges following an investigation into an individual arrested last week and charged with multiple felony counts of ineligible possession of ammunition and firearms .

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During the execution of a search warrant of the Worthington residence of Jonathan Keovilay, 21, local law enforcement located receipts for an area store selling firearms and ammunition.

When video footage from the purchases, which allegedly included a firearm and 250 rounds of ammunition, Justin Phaengdara, 28, was recognized as being with Keovilay and reportedly purchasing ammunition.

A review of Phaengdara’s criminal history shows a felony conviction for aggravated domestic assault in 2020, making him ineligible to possess a firearm or ammunition.

Suspecting that Phaengdara might have additional firearm-related items, search warrants were obtained for his residence and vehicle.


On Sept. 14, Phaengdara was located at his place of employment. He was arrested without incident and transported to the Nobles Country Jail. His vehicle was towed to the law enforcement center where it was later searched.

A search warrant was also executed at Phaengdara’s Worthington residence, where Monte Phaengdara, 29, also resides. Monte was at home while the warrant was executed.

In what law enforcement believed to be Monte’s bedroom, law enforcement reportedly located a black pouch with baggies that field tested positive for methamphetamine, marijuana wax, and rolling papers, among other items.

Monte Phaengdara is charged with one count of first-degree conspiracy to commit aggravated controlled substance crime, which carries a maximum sentence of 40 years imprisonment and or a $1 million fine, and not less than 86 months imprisonment.

He also faces one count of first-degree conspiracy to commit, which carries a maximum sentence of 30 years imprisonment but not less than three, and a $1 million fine; and fifth-degree sale of a controlled substance, which could result in up to five years imprisonment and/or a $10,000 fine.

In the garage, law enforcement reportedly found numerous bags containing a white substance, as well as a variety of ammunition and firearm-related items. A tan bag containing a leafy green substance was also found, according to the report.

In a crawl space accessed through the garage, officers reportedly located multiple firearms, including part of an AR-style rifle, hollow-point ammunition, metal silencers, and various types of ammunition. Mailings belonging to Keovilay were also reportedly located, and a pay stub belonging to Justin Phaengdara.

According to the criminal complaint, at least 14 bags containing suspected marijuana were found, along with a white powder substance and baggies containing a crystalline substance.


After weighing the substances found at the residence, officers determined there was approximately one pound of methamphetamine, 30 grams of cocaine, and approximately 8 pounds of marijuana.

During an interview with Justin Phaengdara, he confirmed he lived at the searched residence and that he was ineligible to possess firearms, but declined to say anything else.

Justin Phaengdara faces seven counts of illegal firearm and ammunition possession, which carries a maximum sentence of 15 years imprisonment, while no less than five, and/or a $30,000 fine. He also faces identical charges to Monte Phaengdara regarding controlled substance sales.

Both Justin and Monte Phaengdara are scheduled to appear in court on Sept. 26.

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Emma McNamee joined The Globe team in October 2021 as a reporter covering Crime & Courts, Politics, and the City beats. Born and raised in Duluth, Minn., McNamee left her hometown to attend school in Chicago at Columbia College. She graduated in 2021 with a degree in Multimedia Journalism, with a concentration in News & Feature Writing and a minor in Creative Writing.
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