Pinal Traffic Stops Lead to Arrest, 296 Pounds of Marijuana

PCSO deputies working routine patrol on Highway 84 made two traffics stops within one hour of each other and seized 296 pounds of marijuana and arrested one person for drug smuggling.

Sheriff Paul Babeu provided details of his deputies’ traffic stops on the night of May 18.

Sheriff Babeu said, “May 18 at 11:25 p.m., a deputy was on patrol on Highway 84 near Interstate 8 when he observed a silver Kia minivan travelling east on Highway 84 at a very slow speed. The vehicle was serving in the lane of traffic and the deputy initiated a traffic stop. After driving for a few hundred feet, the vehicle pulled to the right and stopped. As the vehicle came to a stop, all the doors opened up and four males dressed in camouflaged clothing fled from the van. The deputy approached the vehicle and found nobody left inside. Upon searching the van, he found 2 bales of marijuana, later weighed at 48 pounds. The van and marijuana were seized as evidence. None of the persons who fled the van were located.”

Sheriff Babeu went on to say, “About one hour later, another deputy observed a speeding vehicle travelling east on Highway 84 near Stanfield. The deputy stopped the vehicle and identified the driver as Adrian Bernal, 33 of Casa Grande. While speaking to the driver, he noticed there were two large bundles in the back seat, immediately recognizing them as bales of marijuana. The driver was arrested. A further search of the vehicle turned up six more bales of marijuana in the trunk. The marijuana bundles were later weighed at 248 pounds.”

Bernal is being held in the Pinal County Jail awaiting charges for drug smuggling, probation violation and a child support delinquency warrant.