Arizona Department of Transportation officers seized more than 1,100 pounds of marijuana inside a fake delivery van during a traffic stop Tuesday, officials said.
The van, with authentic-looking markings of a commercial package-delivery service, was driving on Interstate 15 in northwestern Arizona when an ADOT officer spotted that the vehicle had an out-of-state license plate, according to an ADOT news release.
The officer ran a check on the registration of the van, which was traveling north toward the Virgin River Gorge, revealing that it was registered to an individual in North Carolina, officials said in the release.
ADOT officials noted that local delivery vans for the company have Arizona plates and registration.
The officer, who was traveling in the opposite direction when he spotted the vehicle, alerted other ADOT officers. One of the officers caught up with the van and noted several traffic violations as it traveled on I-15 through the Virgin River Gorge, officials said.
After the officer pulled over the van, a drug-sniffing dog was called in and detected illegal substances, the news release stated.
Officers found large bags containing 1,113 pounds of marijuana, as well as 5 grams of a mushroom-based hallucinogenic, three vials of illegal steroids and $7,850, officials said.
The driver, a 48-year-old man who was not identified by ADOT officers, was booked into the Mesquite Detention Center in Nevada pending transfer to the Mohave County Jail in Kingman. The van was taken to ADOT’s commercial port of entry in St. George, Utah, officials said.
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