Friday, Jul. 15, 2011
Traffic stop leads to seizure of $1.2 million in cocaine
State attorney general announced bust Friday
SUN-STAR STAFF REPORTS
A traffic stop at Interstate 5 and Highway 165 near Los Banos led to the seizure of $1.2 million in cocaine on July 6, Attorney General Kamala D. Harris announced Friday.
The Merced Mariposa High-Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Task Force was called in to assist the Department of Homeland Security after a traffic stop revealed the drugs hidden beneath the vehicle's flooorboards. Agents found 83 kilos of cocaine -- the equivalent of 206.5 pounds -- which they estimate to be worth $1.2 million.
"We cannot allow the I-5 corridor to serve as a conduit for transnational gangs trafficking drugs, guns and human beings into California communities," Attorney General Harris said in a press release. "Department of Justice Special Agents up and down this state are essential in the fight to disrupt and dismantle these transnational drug trafficking operations."
The driver of the vehicle was arrested and taken to Fresno County Jail, but the attorney general's office declined to identify him because of the ongoing investigation.