On Oct. 6, 2021, police stopped a truck driver who was on his way to New York City and accused him of trafficking cocaine. The arrest happened at a truck stop in Virginia while the driver was transporting boxed food products. After searching the truck, police allegedly found 50 kilograms of cocaine.
Investigators had a wiretap of the accused man’s phone, and they had been listening to his personal conversations for more than one week before the arrest. Between Sept. 27 and Sept. 30, the accused man spoke with a relative about transporting something. According to investigators, the two individuals used a code language to disguise their conversations about controlled substances.
On Oct. 6, investigators listened to the two men talk on the phone again about stopping at a location to “pick up a girl.” Since investigators believed that “girl” meant “cocaine,” the accused man’s truck was stopped. At around 3:26 a.m., Rockbridge County Sherriff’s officers found two duffle bags with $1.25 million worth of cocaine inside the accused man’s truck.
Both men arrested
The driver of the truck was arrested immediately on federal drug charges. His relative was arrested five days later after police searched his apartment and found alleged drug paraphernalia and cash. According to police, a hidden compartment in the man’s bathroom smelled of cocaine, though no cocaine was actually found.
Defense against drug charges
Police officers often make mistakes during drug investigations like this. If police act illegally during a drug investigation, evidence that they seized could be inadmissible in court. A person who is accused of being involved in a drug transportation operation may argue that their rights were violated by an illegal wiretap or search.