Man claims he can’t open trunk; $120K of pot found inside

Published: Updated:
Ibrahim Michael Makhoul
Photo via Collier County Sheriff’s Office

GOLDEN GATE ESTATES, Fla. A man who claimed he didn’t know how to open the trunk of his car was arrested after $120,000 worth of marijuana was found inside it.

Ibrahim Michael Makhoul, 24, of Miami, was taken into custody Tuesday after Collier County Sheriff’s deputies found 43.5 pounds of marijuana in his black BMW during a traffic stop at mile marker 94 on Interstate 75, the sheriff’s office said.

A drug-sniffing dog detected the pot, leading deputies to ask Makhoul to open the trunk and the center console, the sheriff’s office said. He told deputies that the trunk and console were locked when he purchased the car and that he never tried to open them.

“It’s crazy,” Makhoul told deputies. “I don’t know how they gave me the car like that, like with the middle thing shut and the back thing shut too.”

Deputies opened the console and the trunk and in addition to the drugs, they found paperwork with Makhoul’s name on it inside, the sheriff’s office said.

Makhoul’s passenger ran off during the search, the sheriff’s office said. He climbed over a nearby fence, swam across a canal and ran into woods. Deputies searched for him but were unable to locate him.

Makhoul is facing a charge of marijuana trafficking in excess of 25 pounds. He remained in custody with no bond set as of Wednesday afternoon.

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