Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Task Force Seizes Over 1,000 Pounds of Methamphetamine, Large Quantities of Fentanyl and Cocaine During Inspection in Nogales

On the morning of Monday, February 20, 2023, an Arizona State Trooper initiated a traffic stop on the driver of a commercial motor vehicle on Mariposa Road east of Interstate 19 in Nogales, Arizona.

During the commercial vehicle inspection, the trooper observed several indicators of criminal activity. A subsequent search of the commercial vehicle led to the discovery of the following concealed within the semi-trailer:

  • Approximately 1,035 pounds of suspected methamphetamine
  • Approximately 173 pounds of suspected fentanyl pills (about 784,000 pills)
  • Approximately 21.75 pounds of suspected cocaine

The driver, a 38-year-old male from Nogales, Sonora, was booked into the Santa Cruz County Detention Center on charges including possession and transportation of a narcotic drug for sale and possession and transportation of a dangerous drug for sale.

The street value of the methamphetamine seized is estimated at just over $1 million, while the estimated value for the fentanyl seized is approximately $3.1 million. The estimated street value of the cocaine is approximately $197,000.

This incident marked the second major drug seizure by Arizona State Troopers in a four-day period.

On Thursday, February 16, 2023, troopers seized 286 pounds of suspected fentanyl pills – about 1,297,000 pills – following a one-vehicle crash on Interstate 10 in Sacaton. The driver of the vehicle involved was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries. The estimated street value of the fentanyl seized in that incident was approximately $5.1 million.

In total, troopers have stopped the flow of more than an estimated two million fentanyl pills into Arizona communities within the past week.