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|Deputies make $3.2 million cocaine bust on I-20|
Two men are being held at Ouachita Correctional Center on more than $2 million bond each after an Ouachita Parish sheriff's deputy discovered 32 kilos of cocaine stashed in a trailer the men were pulling.
Sheriff Royce Toney said the drugs were discovered Thursday evening in a truckload of clothes driers after deputies conducted a search of the truck during a traffic stop on Interstate 20 in Ouachita Parish.
Armando Guttierez and Ramon Valles were booked at OCC on charges of possession of cocaine and conspiracy.
"This just shows we've put the right deputies on the interstate," Toney said. "This is the third major load we've taken off the interstate in a month."
Toney pointed to increased air and port security following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks as the cause for increased drug trafficking on the nation's highways.
"They just truck it in now," Toney said.
Toney said he put two additional deputies on I-20 specifically to curtail drug trafficking on the busy throughway.
It's a plan Toney said was working.
"They are definitely putting a dent in the drug traffic," Toney said.
Thursday's seizure of 32 kilos of cocaine had a street value of more than $3.2 million.
Though the cocaine was destined for another locale, Toney said the drugs eventually would have returned to northeastern Louisiana for distribution.
"I've been working in this for 12 years and I can tell you this stuff gets around," Toney said.