HAMMOND, La. (WVLA) – Earlier this week authorities in Louisiana said they intercepted a plane packed with marijuana after the pilots stopped over en route to Miami.
The Hammond Police Department Narcotics Unit received information that narcotics could be headed towards the Hammond Northshore Regional Airport, roughly 50 miles east of Baton Rouge.
Investigators focused on airport surveillance as officers waited for a plane coming from California. According to the Hammond Police Department, “at approximately 5:00pm, a Learjet 55 landed and was attempting to purchase fuel.”
Detectives were given permission by the pilot to look through the plane.
HPD said that during the search “detectives located six large canvas duffle bags and six large suitcases all containing suspected marijuana, marijuana vape cartridges and pre-rolled marijuana cigars. The street value of the items seized is approximately $750,000.”
Detectives estimate that all of the above items are valued around $750,000.
Further investigation led detectives to release the two pilots while the passenger in the plane was arrested at the airport.
Law enforcement identified 40-year-old Leonard Lopez, of Miami as the individual who was arrested.
HPD says, “the aircraft, a LearJet 55, was seized and is pending forfeiture through the 21st Judicial District Attorney’s Office.”
In total, the arrest led to the acquisition of more than $1.6 million by law enforcement.