Lee County deputies discover $142K during traffic stop

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FORT MYERS, Fla.- A Tampa man is in jail after Lee County deputies discovered nearly $143,000 in his car.

Authorities initially pulled over Gerald Russell, 69, for speeding near Bayshore Road and Interstate 75. 

During the stop, officials say Russell appeared very nervous. A K-9 search of the vehicle alerted positive for the odor of narcotics, authorities said. 


When deputies asked Russell if he was responsible for everything in the car, Russell replied a friend had given him $500 to deliver the bag to someone in Miami. Inside the bag, deputies found $142,790.

Russell has been deported previously for crimes including drug smuggling, money smuggling and carrying false government documents, authorities said. 

Russell is now facing fraud and money laundering charges. 

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