MDOT Enforcement Seizes $700k in Cocaine on I-10 in Hancock County
Three bundles of cocaine were seized by MDOT Enforcement Officers during a routine inspection stop on I-10 in Hancock County. The bundles contained approximately 30 kilograms of cocaine with an estimated street value of $700,000. Photo by MDOT
Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) Enforcement Officers found approximately $700,000 in cocaine during a routine safety inspection in Hancock County. At approximately 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, Enforcement Officers stopped a 2000 Freightliner tractor and van trailer eastbound on I-10 for a fuel, weight, safety and paperwork inspection. The trailer was loaded with detergents and soap being transported from Laredo, Texas, to West Palm Beach, Fla.
As part of the inspection, MDOT Enforcement Officers opened the trailer for verification of the load as described in shipping papers and to ensure proper load securement. During the inspection, Officers observed three bundles near the rear of the trailer: two wrapped in grey duct tape, and one wrapped in clear plastic. No other merchandise was similarly wrapped.
The bundles contained approximately 30 kilograms of cocaine with an estimated street value of $700,000. The driver, Barrios Pedro, 46, from Laredo, Texas, was charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Deliver and is awaiting arraignment in the Hancock County Jail.
“I am very proud of our officers’ efforts to protect the public,” said Commissioner Tom King, Southern Transportation District. “Their dedicated work continues to make our neighborhoods and state safer by keeping drugs like these from reaching the streets.”
The investigation of the source and destination of the cocaine is being conducted by the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics and MDOT Enforcement. The Hancock County Sheriff’s Department assisted with the preliminary investigation. The tractor and trailer was impounded pending the results of the investigation.
“As evidenced by this significant seizure, MDOT Enforcement Officers are aware illegal drugs, other contraband and even Human Trafficking victims are often transported in commercial vehicles,” King said. “We must continue to be vigilant for this type activity that will impact the safety of the public.”
MDOT Office of Enforcement’s primary responsibility is the regulation and safe operation of commercial motor vehicles on state and federal highways. Along with preserving Mississippi’s transportation infrastructure, these laws and regulations help further MDOT’s efforts to reduce crashes, injuries and fatalities. As a part of this regulation, Enforcement Officers are trained to look for contraband substances and signs of Human Trafficking.
Visit www.GoMDOT.com to learn more about the Office of Enforcement’s role in keeping Mississippi safe.