DPS stop uncovers more than $15,000 in cash

By BRUCE ALSOBROOK | News-Telegram Managing Editor

Aug 23, 2007 - State troopers confiscated more than $15,000 found hidden in the dashboard of a car following a traffic stop Wednesday.

Hector Simon Guzman, a 32-year-old Pasadena man, was charged with money laundering, a state jail felony, following his arrest on Interstate 30.

Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper Joe Hogue pulled over the Houston area dump truck driver for a traffic violation at 5:25 p.m. The man was driving a 1991 Oldsmobile. He told Hogue he'd flown to Michigan to buy the two-door car for $3,500 and was driving it back to Texas.

"Guzman was nervous, and his trip purpose didn't make sense," Hogue wrote in his arrest report.

Hogue asked for and was given consent to search the car, calling for Sulphur Springs Police Department Lt. Buddy Williams' drug dog, Atos, to assist. The canine alerted on the dashboard. The officers found two black-taped bundles of cash hidden under the dash. The money totaled $15,180.

The money was seized, and Guzman was taken to the county jail.

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