Hamilton truck driver found with almost 400 kilograms of cocaine, U.S. officials say

Investigators followed the driver for three days before arresting him, officials say

A Hamilton man was arrested and charged, U.S. law enforcement officials say, after being found carrying almost 400 kilograms of cocaine.

According to a press release from the United States Attorney’s office, the 37-year-old Hamilton man is facing at least ten years in prison.

He was charged with possession with intent to distribute and conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute five or more kilograms of cocaine.

The charges carry a maximum penalty of life in prison and a $10 million fine.

According to the release, the man entered the US on Aug. 7 via the Ambassador Bridge from Windsor to Detroit driving a commercial truck without a trailer. 

He told US Customs and Border Protection officers he was picking up a trailer in Detroit.

“Investigators surveilled [the man] to the TA travel centre in Dexter, Mich., where, over the next two days, he appeared to make some sort of exchange with the drivers of two other commercial trucks,” read the statement.

Investigators then followed him as he travelled to Ohio and then returned to Dexter, made another exchange with another truck driver and then travelled to Buffalo, N.Y., arriving Aug. 9.

The next day, officials say, his wife arrived at the truck stop where he stayed overnight.

After that “they made frequent stops throughout the area and were observed driving evasively in a manner consistent with individuals conducting counter surveillance,” read the press release.

The man was arrested on Aug. 10, in Cheektowaga, N.Y., by Homeland Security investigators, said Barbara Burns, public affairs officer at the US Attorney’s office. 

His wife was not arrested.

Officials say they executed a federal search warrant on the truck and seized approximately 386 kilograms of suspected cocaine.