The elderly California couple who in December told authorities they were giving out marijuana as Christmas presents, was arrested again Tuesday on the same stretch of Nebraska highway.
Lancaster County (Neb.) Sheriff Terry Wagner said the couple was found in a car with $18,000 cash and a duffel bag with marijuana residue on it. The money was bundled and attached to "owe notes," which spelled out marijuana transactions.
The black Toyota Tacoma truck was stopped by an officer at 9:42 a.m. on Interstate 80 westbound in Lancaster County, in the area of Lincoln, Nebraska. The couple's daughter, 45-year-old Mariah Jiron, of Vermont, was driving. A K-9 officer detected the odor of narcotics on the car and the search found about $17,000 in one duffel bag, which contained the marijuana residue. Wagner said no drugs were found in the vehicle.
Wagner said Patrick, 83, and Barbara Jiron, 80, were taken to jail on charges of possession of money while violating the state's narcotics statutes. They were bonded out that same day. Mariah Jiron was not arrested.
The arrest Tuesday comes just more than three weeks after the couple was arrested Dec. 19 with 60 pounds of marijuana in their Toyota Tacoma.
At that time, the couple was driving on I-80 about 50 miles west of Lincoln in York County, Neb. The couple said they were coming from California and planned to give the weed as Christmas presents to friends and family in Boston and Vermont. The stash had an estimated street value of $300,000.
Patrick and Barbara Jiron's son, Justin Jiron, is a deputy state attorney in Chittenden County, Vermont. York County (Neb.) Attorney Chris Johnson said in late December he has no reason to believe Justin Jiron had been involved in his parent's legal troubles.
Follow Sean Rossman on Twitter: @SeanRossman