LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) – A long-haul trucker from Detroit who was caught in New Mexico with nearly 760 pounds of marijuana in the trailer of his big-rig has pleaded guilty in federal court.

Vernon Earl Coleman entered the plea in Las Cruces, N.M. on Wednesday.

The U.S. attorney’s office says the 46-year-old pleaded guilty to one count of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute. He faces a mandatory 5-year prison term and could receive as much as 40 years.

His sentencing has not been scheduled.

Coleman has been in custody since he was arrested on April 2, 2010, at a state entry checkpoint in southwestern New Mexico. A search of his trailer led to the discovery of 759 pounds of marijuana in duffel bags hidden between pallets. 
Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.


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