Metro-East News

State police find $500k worth of heroin during routine traffic stop

A woman was charged Thursday after police discovered half a million dollars worth of heroin in her car during a traffic stop in Collinsville, according to Illinois State Police.

On June 12, Sara S. Gonzalez-Gamboa, 19, and Martha Z. Gamboa-Madrid, 47, both from Tucson, Arizona, were pulled over in a 2013 Volkswagen CC by state police while driving on Interstate 70.

Gamboa-Madrid, the owner of the car, agreed to a search of the vehicle, during which the trooper said he discovered a hidden compartment containing six duct-taped bundles of heroin, weighing a total of about 4 kilograms.

Trooper Kenneth Patterson said he pulled the pair over originally because they were driving with an obstructed view. During a preliminary hearing, Gamboa-Madrid was charged with intent to deliver more than 900 grams of heroin and trafficking of a controlled substance.

Police also seized about $1,500 from the car, according to a notice for seizure of forfeiture, and are filing for possession of the money. Under state law, authorities can take possession of assets that are believed to be connected to the drug trade.

Kaley Johnson: 618-239-2526, @KaleyJohnson6