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Police intercept plane carrying large amount of drugs


By WDSU Staff

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    HAMMOND, Louisiana (WDSU) — The Hammond Police Department Narcotics Unit intercepted a plane carrying a large amount of narcotics this week.

On Wednesday, the unit received a tip that a plane carrying the narcotics was en route to the Hammond Northshore Regional Airport from California on its way to Miami, Florida.

HPD detectives, along with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Customs Air and Marine Division, went to the airport and conducted surveillance.

According to police, a Learjet 55 landed and was attempting to purchase fuel.

The pilot gave detectives permission to search the aircraft.

During the search, detectives said they found 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, according to police.

Hammond Police said three suspects were detained and interviewed.

The two pilots were released, and the passenger, Leonard Lopez, 40 years old from Miami, Florida, was arrested, according to a news release issued by the department.

The aircraft, a LearJet 55, was seized and is pending forfeiture through the 21st Judicial District Attorney’s Office, according to police.

The total amount of seized items is over $1.6 million.

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