MONROE COUNTY, Mich. - A Canadian truck driver is accused of trying to transport cocaine and heroin across the United States border after officials said they found bags of drugs in the cab of his truck during a traffic stop.
An agent with Homeland Security Investigations was notified Tuesday by Michigan State Police troopers that they had pulled over a commercial truck driver. The driver was Inderjit Singh Bhinder, a Canadian resident.
Bhinder is accused of possession with intent to distribute cocaine and heroin after he allegedly changed his story multiple times during an interview with agents about the drugs.
Drugs found in cab of commercial truck
An MSP trooper said he saw Bhinder violate a Michigan traffic code ordinance while in Monroe County, so he pulled him over around 1 p.m. near exit 210 in Ohio.
The trooper said when he approached Bhinder, the man was acting extremely nervous. Bhinder consented to a search of his truck and the trooper deployed a K-9 unit, police said.
The K-9 alerted the trooper to drug odors in the cab of Bhinder's truck, and the trooper said he found several kilograms of illegal drugs inside three bags sitting in plain view on top of a mattress.
Bhinder was arrested. While he was being handcuffed, he said, "Those bags don't belong to me," according to the trooper.
Custom and Border Patrol agents and HSI agents were called to the scene and searched Bhinder's truck. They found two phones, a GPS and paperwork.
Bhinder, the drugs and the other items were taken to the Michigan Police Department in Trenton.
Agents tested the drugs Tuesday and determined there were 41.24 kilograms of cocaine and 1.39 kilograms of heroin in different packaging.
Bhinder accused of lying to police
Bhinder waived his Miranda rights and agreed to speak with agents, police said.
"During this interview, Bhinder consistently misinformed agents regarding several facts that Bhinder stated occurred after arriving in the United States," court records say.
Officials said Bhinder initially told them he had entered the country at the Port Huron Blue Water Bridge around 11 p.m. Monday and immediately drove to a nearby Michigan rest stop on westbound I-94.
Bhinder said that after using the restroom, he returned to his truck and saw three men standing in front of it. He wasn't able to provide detailed descriptions of the men, but said they might have placed the bags in his truck even though he had locked it before going to the bathroom.
Bhinder claimed the curtains leading to his mattress area had been closed and he had not seen the bags before the trooper found them along the highway.
He said he did not exit the highway except at the rest area, driving on I-94, I-96 and I-275 before being pulled over.
Agents search phones found in truck
Bhinder told police the two phones found in his truck belonged to him. He gave agents the passwords to review the phones, police said.
Agents found text messages received by Bhinder on Monday directing him to drive to an address near I-275 in Wayne County.
Bhinder said a friend had sent him the text message, but told agents he didn't drive to the address.
Bhinder changes story
After the review of the phones, Bhinder told agents he had left the highway to meet with two unknown men who gave him the bags containing drugs. He said he believed the bags contained clothing that belonged to a family member in Canada.
Bhinder then told agents he had been aware that the bags contained drugs, officials said.
He said he had been directed to take the drugs from the U.S. to Canada.
Bhinder gave agents a written statement regarding the facts, according to authorities.
Full criminal complaint
You can view the full criminal complaint below.
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