CASA GRANDE, AZ - Pinal County Sheriff's deputies arrested three men near Casa Grande Tuesday, on suspicion of marijuana possession and being in the United States illegally.
According to the Pinal County Sheriff's Office, a deputy spotted a vehicle traveling at high speed along Interstate-8 near Casa Grande on Tuesday around 11:30 a.m.
Officials said the deputy attempted to stop the vehicle, but instead the driver exited I-8 at Thornton Road and sped off down Shedd Road before slowing down and getting stuck in some rocks.
The driver jumped out of the vehicle and fled on foot with two passengers following behind him, according to PCSO.
The deputy chased after the driver and took him into custody. The Pinal County Sheriff's Air Unit located the two passengers in the desert and they were also taken into custody.
Deputies found 302 pounds of marijuana inside the vehicle. The street value of the drug is estimated at about $266,500, according to authorities.
The driver, Trinidad Cordova-Villena, 28, of Mexico, was arrested and booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center on suspicion of possession of marijuana and possession of marijuana for sale.
Officials said the two passengers were in the country illegally and were turned over to the U.S. Border Patrol for deportation.
The vehicle was a rental from Hertz rental car.