DPS troopers seize more than $6 million in drugs during 2 traffic stops
PHOENIX — Arizona Department of Public Safety troopers seized 180 pounds of illegal drugs worth more than $6 million during two recent traffic stops, officials said Thursday.
“Arizona’s Border Strike Force continues to seize significant amounts of illegal narcotics coming across the southern border,” Gov. Doug Ducey said in a press release. “Keeping these dangerous and deadly drugs out of America’s schools and neighborhoods is a heroic effort.”
On May 15, a DPS trooper pulled over a tractor-trailer on westbound Interstate 10 near Nogales for multiple violations.
During a search of the vehicle, the trooper found 44.9 pounds of heroin, 40 pounds of fentanyl pills and 21.4 pounds of methamphetamine stowed in backpacks and duffel bags in the truck, authorities said.
The estimated combined value of the drugs is more than $2.5 million.
The driver of the car was identified as 52-year-old Jesus E. Sepulveda. He was arrested on charges including possession and transportation of narcotic drugs for sale and possession of dangerous drugs for sale.
Three days later, the same trooper stopped a vehicle on eastbound I-10 near Salome for a violation. An ensuing vehicle search revealed 74 pounds of fentanyl pills, worth an estimated $3.7 million.
The driver, 21-year-old Andrew Reyna, was booked into La Paz County jail on charges of possession and transportation of a narcotic drug for sale, according to DPS.