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Canadian pulled over in traffic stop on I-15 indicted in cocaine case

A Canadian man was indicted on charges of ferrying 98 pounds of cocaine worth $4.5 million through Southern Nevada, authorities said Friday.

Austin William Hill, 31, was charged with trafficking a controlled substance and transporting a controlled substance.

Last month, a Nevada Highway Patrol officer pulled Hill’s pickup over on Interstate 15 north of Las Vegas because he was travelling 10 mph above the posted 65 mph speed limit.

During the traffic stop, Hill was acting very nervously, according to his arrest report.

“At one point I observed that he was beginning to sweat. I also (noticed) that he turned pale at one point and then became flush. He was also unable to stand still and appeared to be shaking,” the report said.

Hill said he had driven to St. George, Utah, from Alberta, Canada, to buy a vehicle. Because there was an issue with the vehicle’s title, Hill told authorities he had come to Las Vegas for the night. When he was pulled over, he said he was on his way back to St. George to finish the purchase.

The patrolman was about to let Hill go with a warning when he asked him whether he had any drugs in the vehicle. Hill responded, “No and (expletive) no,” the report said.

According to the report, Hill allowed the patrolman to search his pickup.

A narcotics K-9 named Bebe was called in and discovered a compartment underneath the bed of the pickup. Inside the compartment were 63 vacuum-sealed bundles of cocaine. Hill had about $12,500 in cash.

An arraignment hearing for Hill was set for Nov. 26.

Judge Jennifer Togliatti ordered Hill to remain in custody at the Clark County Detention Center without bail.

Contact reporter Francis McCabe at fmccabe@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-1039.

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