Troopers seize $1.2 million worth of marijuana in Madison County

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For Immediate Release: November 20, 2018

Contact: Lieutenant David Smith (614) 799-4645

Troopers seize $1.2 million worth of marijuana in Madison County

COLUMBUS – Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers filed felony drug charges against a California man after a traffic stop in Madison County. During the traffic stop, troopers seized 250 pounds of marijuana valued at approximately $1.2 million.

On November 19, at 12:19 p.m., troopers stopped a 2017 Penske truck with Indiana registration for a speed violation on Interstate 70. Criminal indicators were observed and a Patrol drug-sniffing canine alerted to the vehicle. A probable cause search revealed the contraband.

The driver, Benjamin Malugani, 23, from Willits, Calif., was incarcerated in the Tri-County Jail and charged with possession of marijuana, a second-degree felony.

If convicted, he could face up to eight years in prison and up to a $15,000 fine.

A photo of the seized contraband is available for download on the Patrol’s website at

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