A happenstance traffic stop on a tractor-trailer truck making its way through Troup County revealed an enormous amount of marijuana.
Deputies with the Troup County Sheriff’s Office intercepted the semi truck after witnessing the driver ignoring the weigh station on Interstate 85 between Hogansville and LaGrange. The northbound truck was pulled over at about 8:43 p.m. Thursday night shortly after it bypassed the weigh station near Mile Marker 23.
The fact that such a large truck would blatantly disregard the weigh station raised suspicions and the subsequent investigation revealed that the trailer was packed with approximately 151 pounds of high-grade marijuana. Drug agents estimate that the marijuana has a total street value of about $1.6 million.
Despite the marijuana being packaged in numerous large vacuum seal plastic bags, a sheriff’s office K-9 alerted that drugs were in the vehicle, giving probable cause for the search. The drugs were obviously part of a much larger operation as they were not packaged for street level sale.
As a result, the driver, Amaury Izquierdo Mansito, and the passenger, Marco Alfaro, were then arrested and transported to the Troup County Sheriff’s Office where they were both charged with Trafficking Marijuana.
Mansito was additionally charged with Failure to Maintain Lane, Failure to Obey a Traffic Control Device, and Driving with an Expired Driver’s License.
Due to the unusually large quantity of marijuana, the Troup County Sheriff’s Office contacted and received assistance from investigators with Customs and Border Protection, Homeland Security, and Georgia Motor Carrier Compliance Division.
As of press time, Mansito and Alfaro are awaiting booking into the Troup County Jail.
The marijuana along with the truck were seized into evidence. The truck will likely undergo drug asset forfeiture procedures.