Traffic stop yields large cocaine seizure

On April 18th, 2023 at approximately 2:30 PM, deputies assigned to the RADE Unit Highway Interdiction Team were conducting routine patrol on LA Highway 28 East in Pineville.  Deputies observed the driver of a semi-tractor trailer truck commit a traffic violation and conducted a traffic stop for improper lane usage near LA 28 and LA 3128, Paper Mill Cutoff Rd.Deputies made contact with the driver who was later identified as Jose Calderon, 56 from Edinburg, TX. As deputies were conducting their investigation, they became suspicious of possible criminal activity. Deputies then deployed canine “Izzy” to do a free air sniff of the tractor trailer and observed a positive alert to possible narcotics.From a thorough search of the tractor trailer, deputies located 35 kilos of powder cocaine.  Total weight of the packages was a little over 108 pounds. Deputies placed Calderon under arrest and he was transported to the Rapides Parish Detention Center and booked. Calderon remains in jail at the time of this release being held on a $500,000.00 bond.  Deputies also impounded the tractor trailer rig.RADE Agents responded to assist in the investigation, along with the assistance of Agents from the local field office of the FB and the Drug Enforcement Administration. Agents estimate the street value of the recovered cocaine is between $1 -$3 million dollars.Arrestee:             Jose Calderon, 56                              Edinburg, TXCharges:            Improper lane usage                            Obstruction of drivers view windshield                            Possession with intent to distribute cocaine

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