DPS officers seize 164 pounds of marijuana, arrest 3 people

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BENSON -- The following is a press release from the Arizona Department of Public Safety:

On March 9, at about 9:17 a.m., an officer with the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) observed two vehicles speeding, northbound on State Route 90, 10 miles south of Benson. When the officer attempted a traffic stop, the driver of the first vehicle, a 2005 Chevrolet Malibu sped up to flee from the officer, then pulled over and stopped about five miles later. As the officer began high-risk stop procedures, the driver again sped away attaining speeds at over 100 mph. The driver attempted to make a high-speed turn into Cottonwood Bluffs, about two miles south of Interstate 10, lost control and the vehicle rolled. Located inside the vehicle was 164 pounds of marijuana. Eliodoro Diaz Castro, 24, of Mexico, was transported by helicopter to a Tucson Hospital, where he was treated and released for his injuries. He was booked into the Pima County Jail for possession/transportation of marijuana for sale and felony flight.

The second vehicle, a maroon and tan Chevrolet pickup was stopped by Benson Police Department. The passenger, Francisco Javier Hernandez Martinez, 33, of Mexico, was discovered to be the owner of the Chevrolet Malibu. He was arrested for conspiracy/transportation of marijuana for sale. The driver, Ramon Aguiler Cota, 25, of Mexico, was arrested for conspiracy/transportation of marijuana, possession of cocaine and driving under the influence of cocaine. They were both booked into the Sierra Vista Jail.