Idaho State Police are making a more frequent number of drug trafficking stops on Interstate-86 near American Falls, while also seizing nearly 70-pounds of marijuana this past week alone.
ISP officials said they have been discovering these drug traffickers during routine traffic stops, and ISP Lt. Ismael Gonzales said ever since surrounding states have legalized the use of marijuana, this has created a growing problem for Idaho.
"I'm more than positive some of these drugs are coming from California, Mexico, and some of those other states where it is a more profound type of drug," Lt. Gonzales said.
For many drug traffickers, I-86 is one of the only corridors connecting those states to places such as the Dakotas and even Canada.
Power County Sheriff Jim Jeffries is seeing the amount of drug trafficking increasing since the legalization of the use of the drug in neighboring states. Now, he said the problem is becoming more local.
"Some of the drugs they have intercepted and taken off the streets were leaded for local cities, right here in southeastern Idaho," Jeffries said. "That creates the opportunity for people to buy it in another location but they make the mistake of bringing it through Idaho."
A mistake? Likely, now that the Bear River Task Force is out patrolling en force, and is working to rid the state of drug trafficking.
The task force is made up of sheriff's offices throughout southeastern Idaho and is specifically designed to crack-down on drug trafficking.
Jeffries said the task force has been very successful in the area thus far, and even though trafficking is up, the amount of drug traffickers being caught in the area is going even higher.