Look-A-Like TxDOT Trucks Smuggling Drugs

by Jacqueline Sit
NewsWest 9

The logos, letters and colors.

It looks like the real deal, but take a closer look at a TxDOT truck, it's a fake.  Smugglers may think they have the look down to a T, not quite says TxDOT's Glen Larum.

"They've got the lettering wrong they've gotten numbers wrong they've got the stripping wrong," Glen Larum, a spokesperson with TxDOT, said.

With a lot of road to cover, TxDOT trucks are out day and night, and drug smugglers think using a copy is a good way to sneak stuff around.

"We're starting to take it personally, because it's not TxDOT employees doing this," Larum said.

TxDOT says not too long ago, a man was caught with a six pack of beer inside his look alike truck, the phony letters was what gave him away, but five hours away from was an even larger bust.

"This last truck they've found was carrying a thousand pounds of marijana," Larum said.

Over a thousand pounds of pot was found in a fake truck, the reflective stripes on the front and back gave it away.  Officials say it could happen anywhere.

"I think there's a greater chance that's in the metropolitan area or in the area right along the border," Larum said.

But big city or not, TxDOT crews aren't letting their guard down.

"Drug smugglers are very innovative, and we're not surprised, they're using our trucks, but we're just starting to take it personal," Larum said.

Because this is happening, TxDOT employees are allowing themselves to be voluntarily pulled over by authorities so investigators can check if they're the real deal.  Now TxDOT officials say they don't expect you to remember exactly what these trucks look like, but if something doesn't look right, call the police or TxDOT.