A Chicago man is facing a felony drug charge after Ohio troopers reported seizing 11 pounds of cocaine with an approximate street value of $155,000 during a Friday traffic stop on Interstate 70 in Madison County.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol announced the Friday arrest and drug seizure on Tuesday afternoon.
Troopers stopped a 2003 Nissan Frontier with an Illinois license plate at 11:22 a.m. on Friday on I-70 because the driver of the SUV had been observed making a marked lanes violation, the highway patrol said.
During the traffic stop, troopers said they observed "criminal indicators," and a drug-sniffing canine alerted to the vehicle, giving troopers probable cause to search it, the patrol said in a release.
During the search, troopers reported discovering an aftermarket hidden compartment in the back wall of the SUV that contained what appeared to be cocaine.
The suspect, 33-year-old Juan Carlos Leon Rivera, of Chicago, was arrested and booked at the Tri-County Regional Jail in Mechanicsburg. Rivera has been charged with possession of drugs, a first-degree felony, and having a hidden vehicle compartment, a fourth-degree felony.
If convicted, he could face up to 12-and-half years in prison and up to a $25,000 fine.
Eric Lagatta is a reporter at the Columbus Dispatch covering public safety, breaking news and social justice issues. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @EricLagatta
This article originally appeared on The Columbus Dispatch: Ohio troopers seize $155,000 worth of cocaine in Madison County