Millions of Dollars Worth Of Cocaine Seized In Traffic Stop

Millions of dollars of cocaine are now off East Texas streets.  Monday night, Rusk County deputies seized 127 pounds of coke out of a truck, driving from Houston.   The man was pulled over along Highway 59, just north of Garrison in Rusk County.

Deputy Kenneth Biggs pulled over a white work truck Monday night for following too closely behind a car, but he didn't know the stop would lead him to 45 kilos of cocaine. The driver said he was a construction worker on vacation headed towards Shreveport.

"He's got a brand new set of tools, has dust on them, none of them even have dings on them, none of these tools have been used, they're all brand new," says Deputy Biggs. "Naturally I'm thinking 'well, this ain't right.'"

Deputy Biggs says the man had a work jump suit with grease stains on it and in the front seat a hard hat and worker's vest, all trying to make it look like he was a legit contractor. But Biggs knew better, he said the man seemed too nervous and his story just didn't add up so he searched the truck and came upon a seemingly full fuel tank in the back of the truck.

"That weld mark right there shouldn't be there, you see how there's two different weld marks so that tells me that something else has been welded on here that ain't supposed to be."

That something was a hidden compartment full of 127 pounds of cocaine.

"It's a lot of dope," says Sheriff Glen Deason.

So much dope it's the biggest bust Rusk County has seen and the most creative. But thanks to one deputy's instinct, "you don't have to worry about where it's going, who's going to get it, who's kids are going to get it, what school they're going to sell it at, it's right here and it's not going anywhere," says Deason.

Rusk County deputies arrested the driver-Michael Lloyd Francis, 47, of Richmond, Texas. He's been charged with possession of a controlled substance, a first degree felony.

Tracy Watler/Reporting: