Trucker and Passenger Arrested When Inspection Uncovers Hundreds of Pounds of Drugs

McKinley County, NM — A trucker and a passenger are facing a mountain of smuggling charges after an inspection last week led to the discovery almost 500 pounds of drugs.

According to the New Mexico State Police (NMSP), the bust occurred on January 21, at the Gallup Port of Entry, which is located on eastbound Interstate 40 at mile marker 12.


NMSP said a 2012 Volvo approached the checkpoint at approximately 7:57 a.m. when officers observed an odor of marijuana coming from the trailer.

A subsequent inspection led to the discovery of seventeen black duffel bags, three cardboard boxes, two plastic totes, and a trash bag within the trailer and the cab.

Authorities then found 489.5 pounds of marijuana, 2.5 pounds of fentanyl, 28.5 pounds of THC edibles, and one pound of psychedelic mushrooms.

Additionally, NMSP said two handguns were also found and seized.


The driver, Brandon Ammon Johnson, 39, of Laplace, LA (pictured bottom), and passenger, Terrance Colin Hicks Jr., 46, of Houston, TX (pictured top), were both arrested without incident, NMSP reported.

Both are facing multiple trafficking charges which are each first offenses.

Hicks is also facing a charge of possession of firearm or destructive device by a felon.


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