Newtown Township police announced Thursday that they recovered a large amount of suspected marijuana and cash late last year.
In a statement, police said they were investigating a loitering and prowling incident in the area of Providence Court and Twining Bridge Road. Around 3 a.m., officers spotted a suspicious rented Hertz van on Swamp Road near Providence Court and conducted a traffic stop.
There were two men inside – Christian Leo Abell, 22, of San Diego, and Elihu Blackmon III, 27, of Albuquerque – and the van had a “strong odor” of marijuana emanating from inside, police said.
Officers investigated further and allegedly found suspected marijuana and more than $19,000 cash inside.
The van, which was rented from New Mexico, was impounded and a search warrant was obtained, leading to the further discovery of 30 to 40 pounds of marijuana, more than 700 marijuana vaporizers and $80,000 in additional cash, police said.
The suspected drugs were found inside a number of wrapped Christmas presents and pieces of luggage, police said.
Abel was arraigned Monday before District Judge Mick Petrucci on charges of possession with intent to deliver, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia and related offenses. He was sent to prison on 10 percent of $500,000 bail, which was posted Tuesday by a New Jersey woman.
Blackmon was wanted as of Thursday and a felony warrant has been issued for his arrest.
Editor’s Note: All individuals arrested or charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty. The story was compiled using information from police and public court documents.