Police seize nearly $80K in cash: Drug trafficking, smuggling suspected

COMBES — A routine traffic stop led to the seizure of $79,100 in cash that police found in a hidden compartment in a car.

While on patrol about 9 p.m. Thursday, a Combes police officer made a traffic stop on a Hyundai i10 on southbound U.S. 77.

“During the traffic stop, the driver provided officers with inconsistent statements regarding his travels,” Combes Police Chief Patrick Quill said in a statement.

“This led officers to become suspicious of the true nature of (the suspect’s) activities.”

Officers searched the car and found a hidden compartment inside the vehicle, Quill said.

They found the cash inside, he said.

Police arrested 34-year-old Jose de Jesus Hernandez-Hernandez of Tamaulipas, Mexico, on a charge of money laundering, a third-degree felony.

“Hernandez provided a statement to investigators acknowledging his involvement in the transportation of narcotics and smuggling of currency but refused to provide any further information,” Quill said in the statement.

The currency and car were seized by police.

Hernandez has been arraigned and his bond was set at $50,000.

He was being held at the Cameron County Jail.