Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement
Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement Makes Largest Marijuana Seizure Ever

Press Release Date:  Wednesday, February 01, 2006  
Contact Information:  Bobby Clue
Information Officer

Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement Special Operations Officers Joey Conn, Randy Honeycutt, Steve Burke and K-9 Tyson with over 1,300 lbs of Seized MarijuanaLondon, KY - A traffic stop at a Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement (KVE) weigh station has led to the largest marijuana seizure in the departments history. On Monday, January 30, 2006, at approximately 12:00 (EST), KVE Officer Randall A. Honeycutt made a traffic stop on a tractor trailer for a safety inspection. After talking with the driver, it was determined that further inspection was warranted. At this time, a Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement Special Operations K-9 was brought in to inspect the truck where the scent of marijuana was detected.

Special Operations Officers Joey Conn and Steve Burke assisted Officer Honeycutt in further inspection of the suspects vehicle which led to a drug seizure of approximately 1,300 pounds of marijuana with a street worth of just over 1.5 million dollars. Additional inspection of the vehicle led officers to find over $23,000 in cash which was also seized.

Abner Omar Valencia Espina, 26 years of age, and Victor Manuel Valenzuela Saavedra, 23 years of age were arrested and charged with multiple violations including: expired license, expired registration, trafficking in marijuana over five pounds and possession of narcotics with the intent to distribute. Both men are currently lodged in the Laurel County Detention Center.

"This is the single largest marijuana seizure in the history of Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement," said Lt. Greg Jenkins, Commander of KVE Special Operations. "Our training is a vital component to the interdiction efforts of our department and our officers."

Kentucky Vehicle Enforcement weigh station facilities are used for the purpose of weighing commercial vehicles and inspection of the vehicles for the safety of the vehicles and cargo.

"This impressive marijuana seizure eliminates another opportunity for drugs to hit our communities," said Lieutenant Governor Steve Pence, secretary of the Justice and Public Safety Cabinet. "I commend the drug interdiction efforts of our brave KVE officers."

"This is one of the many examples of the importance of these facilities to the safety and security of Kentucky citizens," said KVE Commissioner Greg Howard. "Weigh facilities play an important role as KVE and Homeland Security work together to protect our state."