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Louisiana traffic stop leads to drug charges

An apparently routine traffic stop in northeastern Louisiana one recent Saturday morning led to the arrest of two Texas men for drug possession.

Louisiana State Police officers claim they seized 54 pounds of marijuana from a Toyota Camry after pulling the eastbound vehicle over for traveling with fog lights on during clear weather around 7 a.m. Because the driver appeared nervous, police became suspicious and claim they got permission to search the vehicle. Along with the marijuana, officers allege they found $875 in cash.

The men, ages 27 and 40, were accused of conspiracy and possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. The 40-year-old driver was also accused of not having a driver's license, using improper lighting (fog lamps) and transactions involving the proceeds from drug sales. They were booked into the Ouachita Correctional Center.

Marijuana, cocaine, crack, heroin, ecstasy and methamphetamine are among the prohibited drugs that find their way to drug users in Louisiana. A person caught carrying these drugs can be charged with possession or trafficking, depending on the amount discovered. Associated items like cash can also be used by authorities to allege a suspect is distributing drugs.

In Louisiana, allegations of drug crimes are serious, and a person charged with them should seek the help of a criminal defense attorney to protect his or her best interests. When drugs are siezed during a traffic stop, a critical issue is whether police had sufficient probable cause to stop the vehicle. An experienced defense attorney will also review the circumstances of the search to determine if the accuseds' constitutional rights were violated.

Source: Thenewsstar.com, "2 arrested transporting 54 pounds of suspected marijuana," Nov. 3, 2013

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