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34 pounds of meth seized outside Gold Hill

A traffic stop outside Gold Hill led to the seizure of 33.8 pounds of methamphetamine and more than $9,000, along with the arrest of a Salem man on felony drug charges.

David Contreras Sr., 48, made his first court appearance Wednesday on felony counts of manufacturing, delivering and possessing methamphetamine in the wake of an April 9 traffic stop, according to documents filed in Jackson County Circuit Court.

At 6:24 p.m., Oregon State Police troopers stopped a silver Jeep Liberty SUV on northbound Interstate 5 at milepost 39 for allegedly speeding. Contreras was a passenger in the Jeep, police said.

During the stop, police said they spotted a Pepsi box that had been ripped and taped back together with masking tape in the SUV’s luggage compartment.

A drug-sniffing K-9 later was deployed, and “several bundles” of crystal meth were found, police said. They also discovered two plastic bags of drugs inside a suitcase that contained clothing in Contreras’ size, along with at least two suspected fake IDs fitting Contreras’ descriptions.

The driver, who has not been charged with a crime, allegedly told police he was held against his will and that it was not his choice to drive Contreras and the meth.

Contreras has been held in the Jackson County Jail since April 10 for violating his parole on a prior Marion County meth-delivery conviction. As of Wednesday afternoon, he remained in jail without bail.

Reach reporter Nick Morgan at 541-776-4471 or nmorgan@rosebudmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @MTCrimeBeat.

Oregon State Police says they seized more than 33 pounds of meth from David Contreras Sr. during a freeway stop near Gold Hill.