DPS officers find 200 pounds of marijuana in SUV after pursuit

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by Jennifer Thomas

Video report by Stella Inger

Posted on July 8, 2013 at 10:30 PM

Updated Friday, Jul 12 at 5:22 PM

PHOENIX -- A driver was taken into custody after Department of Public Safety officers reportedly found 200 pounds of marijuana inside his vehicle following a short pursuit in the southeast Valley Monday night.

At about 8 p.m., a DPS officer attempted to pull over the driver of an SUV for speeding and unsafely changing lanes on Interstate 10. The driver fled from the officer and a pursuit began.

The driver allegedly attempted to hit another officer's marked DPS car and tried to force other vehicles off the road during the chase.

The suspect stopped his car after exiting at Elliot Road and tried to run. A DPS officer found him and took him into custody.

DPS officials said nine bundles of marijuana were found in the back of the Chevy Tahoe. The marijuana had a street value of approximately $100,000.

The driver, identified as Fernando Manuel Beltran-Machado, was taken to DPS headquarters for questioning. He was booked on drug charges and unlawful flight from a law enforcement vehicle.

No one was hurt during the pursuit.

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