From Post staff reports
A speeding SUV on Interstate 40 on Wednesday led Mt. Juliet Police to the discovery of 17 pounds, or 8 kilograms, of cocaine wrapped and hidden inside a spare tire.
The cocaine has an estimated street value of $250,000, authorities said.
It was found inside a Chevrolet Tahoe driven by Rodrigo Leon-Castillo, 36, of Katy, Texas. He faces federal charges of trafficking cocaine.
This is the cocaine seized by Mt. Juliet Police in a joint investigation with Metro Nashville Police on Wednesday during a traffic stop on I-40 in Mt. Juliet. The cocaine was discovered inside the spare tire of a Chevrolet Tahoe.
Photos courtesy of www.police.nashville.org
The traffic stop was the result of a joint investigation by Mt. Juliet Police and the Metro Nashville Police Interstate Interdiction Unit.
A news release from the MNPD said Metro officers on Wednesday stopped a Chevrolet Impala with Texas plates for a traffic violation in West Nashville. As the officers spoke with the occupants of the car, one of whom reportedly had a drug history, it became clear that they were traveling with a tan Tahoe also with Texas plates.
Information regarding the Tahoe was relayed to MJPD and Officer Eric Joubert spotted the vehicle and stopped it for speeding on I-40. A police dog named Raptor alerted to the presence of drug odor coming from the vehicle. Authorities noted that the spare tire underneath the Tahoe showed signs of tampering. The spare tire was removed and officers found concealed inside eight packages of cocaine weighing 17.6 pounds. Also found in the vehicle was approximately $900 in cash.
Authorities believe Leon-Castillo was traveling from Houston, Texas to Washington, D.C.