I-Team: Traffic stop on I-15 leads trooper to nearly 75 pounds of meth

I-Team Special Reports

Amount equal to 200,000+ individual doses, officials estimate

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — A Nevada Highway Patrol trooper pulled over a pickup truck Monday on Interstate 15, finding 74 pounds of methamphetamine during the traffic stop, court documents obtained by the I-Team said.

The truck was towing an unregistered trailer, which led to the stop near the Flamingo Road exit northbound, officials wrote.

The driver, Jaquavius Powell, told the trooper he and his passenger were traveling from San Diego to Georgia. Powell explained he was transporting the empty trailer as part of an interstate transportation company, court documents said.

During an inspection of the trailer, the trooper found a black plastic trunk. In it were two large plastic bags containing “numerous vacuum sealed plastic packages containing what [the trooper] recognized to be a large quantity of a crystal-like substance,” documents said.

In court paperwork, the trooper noted Powell had no documentation on him showing he worked for a legitimate business or that he was an authorized commercial driver.

A test confirmed the crystal-like substance was methamphetamine. One pound of meth is enough for 3,200 individual doses, officials estimate.

Powell was arrested on charges of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance.

Last year, the I-Team investigated the extensive cross-border drug network funneling enormous amounts of methamphetamine into Las Vegas to be trafficked and sold. From 2017 to 2019, the amount of meth seized more than doubled from 47,000 pounds to 112,000 pounds, officials with the Drug Enforcement Administration said.

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