MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Two women pulled over for speeding in Memphis had 18 pounds of fentanyl and heroin in their car, according to Shelby County District Attorney's Office.
The women were traveling from California on Interstate 40 when a Memphis police officer pulled them over for speeding at around 7:15 a.m. Thursday.
Officers said the two women, 19-year-old Selena Castillo and 23-year-old Jacqueline de Avila Montoya, were traveling to New Jersey.
"We are sort of in the center of everything, and we have a lot of traffic," Mary Arnold said. "They could have got in the wrong persons hands. I am happy."
Also in the car at the time of the arrest were a 1-year-old boy and a 3-year-old girl. The children were placed in the custody of the Tennessee Department of Children's Services.
"To involve their children in that, that's pitiful," Zettie Nickson said.
Investigators said they found 12.8 pounds of fentanyl and 4.8 pounds of heroin hidden in the lining of the car's trunk. The street value of the drugs is estimated to be at least $500,000.
Fentanyl is a highly potent opioid that is up to 100 times stronger than morphine and many times stronger than heroin, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The traffic stop and arrest happened on I-40 eastbound at mile marker 27 in Fayette County. The arresting officer is a Memphis police officer who is assigned to the West Tennessee Drug Task Force. The women are being held in Fayette County Jail; their mugshots have not been released at this time.