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Police make 400-pound pot bust

LILBURN - A Gwinnett County Sheriff's Deputy discovered a mountain of marijuana in the back of a cargo van Tuesday night, marking the second major drug bust on Gwinnett roadways in as many days, police said.

The deputy, a member of the K-9 unit, pulled the van over on U.S. Highway 29 in Lilburn for following another vehicle too closely and a window tint violation, police said.

When questioning the driver, the deputy observed more than 400 pounds of marijuana - stacked in 17 large bundles - in the van's cargo area, in plain view, said Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Stacey Bourbonnais.

The estimated street value of the drugs is $1.8 million, Bourbonnais said.

The driver, Jorge Gonzalez-Vasquez, 28, of Lilburn, was charged with trafficking marijuana in addition to the traffic violations. He was also driving without a license, police said.

Gonzalez-Vasquez remains at the Gwinnett County Jail without bond.

The pot seizure comes on the heels of a major cocaine bust made by Gwinnett police Monday.

Officers with the department's highway interdiction unit discovered 67 kilograms of cocaine in the cargo area of a Jeep Cherokee on Interstate 85 in Suwanee. The estimated worth of that stash was $6.7 million.

The driver, Roberto Hernandez-Avila, of Lawrenceville, remains in jail on charges of trafficking cocaine and driving without a valid license.