WILMINGTON — Cargo consisting of 131 bags of marijuana was seized Monday as it was being transported via a pickup truck in Clinton County.
Marked bags contained different strains of marijuana including a high-grade type, said Major Brett Prickett of the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office.
Sgt. Doug Eastes of the Clinton County Sheriff’s Office said the marijuana is believed to have originated at a “sophisticated growing operation.”
Street value for the marijuana is “well over” $200,000, said Eastes.
Two Columbus men, Ryan Justin Ward and Sean Brian Lewie, both 26, were each charged with possessing drugs, a second-degree felony. The men were taken into custody without incident.
The sheriff’s office received information about a marijuana shipment coming through Clinton County, according to Prickett. Through collaboration with other law enforcement agencies, the county sheriff’s office was able to stop the northbound vehicle about 4:30 p.m. Monday on U.S. 68 near the I-71 interchange.
The bagged marijuana was inside a large container sitting on the bed of a Dodge pickup truck. No firearms were found in the vehicle.
At the time of the News Journal interview on Tuesday, the marijuana had not been weighed, but officials were estimating a total greater than 100 pounds.
The sheriff’s office worked in conjunction with a multi-jurisdictional organization — the U.S. Route 23 Pipeline Major Crimes Task Force — as well as with Ross County Sheriff George W. Lavender Jr., assisting with surveillance.
Eastes said he anticipates more charges to be filed against the two suspects, pending crime lab reports.
A drug-sniffing dog with the Ohio State Highway Patrol alerted on the vehicle.
Reach Gary Huffenberger at 937-556-5768 or on Twitter @GHuffenberger.