N.C. man charged with drug possession | VailDaily.com

N.C. man charged with drug possession

Christine Ina Casillas

Late Saturday afternoon, state troopers stopped Juan Ramon Garcia Gonzalez for weaving on Interstate 70, said Trooper Dave Rollins. Garcia Gonzalez was traveling east with three other passengers when Rollins pulled over his 1993 Ford Crown Victoria.

“He was weaving back and forth,” Rollins said. “But then after talking to him for a few minutes, I noticed that his stories weren’t straight.”

Rollins questioned the group, noticing indicators of “illegal activity,” he said. He received consent from the driver to search the car, and there he found three quarters of a pound of cocaine in the air filter box in the engine compartment.

“What these guys do is buy a car and stash the drugs in different compartments,” he said. “When they’re finished distributing the drugs, they get rid of that car.”

The group apparently was traveling from Oregon to Los Angeles, then from Los Angeles to North Carolina, he said. Garcia Gonzalez apparently was from North Carolina with family in Oregon.

“The other guys in the car were all young, all juveniles,” he said. “They were released.”

Drug busts aren’t unusual in the valley, public safety officials said.

About two months ago, more than 200 pounds of marijuana were found wedged inside the tires of a car. The suspect also was pulled over for weaving, and he was arrested on charges of possession of more than 200 pounds of marijuana.

In September, a 26-year-old man was arrested on charges of possession of more than 100 pounds of marijuana. Pascual Ramirez-Rivera, of Omaha, Neb., was pulled over for weaving in and out of lanes on I-70 through Dowd Canyon. Rollins, who also arrested Ramirez-Rivera, found a false compartment in the back of the minivan, and inside the bed there were packages of marijuana up to 123 pounds.

Ramirez-Rivera was booked into the Eagle County Detention Center on a $15,800 bond. He was charged with possession of more than 8 ounces of marijuana, marijuana with intent to distribute, a special offender charge of more than 100 pounds of marijuana, weaving and no insurance.

Christine Ina Casillas can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 607, or at ccasillas@vaildaily.com.

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