You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 8:14 a.m.

Man busted with 10 kilos of cocaine in Ann Arbor had 4 children with him, records show

By Lee Higgins

A man who police said was carrying 10 kilograms of cocaine in his van was arrested Monday night during a traffic stop on the west side of Ann Arbor, federal court records show. Police said four of his children were also in the van.

Gerhard Neufeld Wiebe, who lives in Canada, was charged Tuesday in a federal criminal complaint with possession with intent to distribute cocaine.

He was arrested about 9:04 p.m. Monday when his Dodge Caravan with an Ontario license plate was pulled over by a Michigan State Police K-9 officer on M-14, court records show. It’s unclear why the van was stopped.

According to an affidavit by DEA Special Agent Michael Brouillard, the trooper ordered Wiebe out of the van, put him in a patrol vehicle and asked whether he had weapons, money or drugs. Wiebe said he did not, the affidavit says, and gave the trooper consent to search the van.

A drug dog “alerted with a ‘positive sniff” on the front driver’s side fender, court records say. Asked again whether there were drugs in the van, Wiebe said there was cocaine inside, the affidavit says, later telling investigators to search the passenger side rear panel.

The trooper told a woman in the front passenger seat to step out of the van, along with four of Wiebe's juvenile children, who were sitting in the back.

Agents recovered 10 kilograms of cocaine, records say, and Wiebe agreed to speak with them. He told them a man paid him $3,900 to drive to Los Angeles to pick up an unknown quantity of cocaine, promising him an additional $2,000 provided he successfully delivered it to an undisclosed location, the affidavit says.

Wiebe told agents he left Canada July 2, and arrived at a hotel in Los Angeles three days later, where he parked the van, records show. On July 6, someone picked up the van and Wiebe was later contacted and told it was loaded up, the affidavit says.

According to the affidavit, Wiebe left Los Angeles on July 7 and was pulled over in Ann Arbor four days later. It's unclear whether he has an attorney. If convicted, he faces at least 10 years in prison.

Michigan State Police troopers did not have further details this morning, including Wiebe's age. DEA Special Agent Rich Isaacson, a spokesman for the agency in Detroit, could not immediately be reached for comment this morning.

Lee Higgins covers crime and courts for He can be reached by phone at (734) 623-2527 and email at



Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 7:53 p.m.

How irresponsible to be carting around drugs with children! Glad they got him.


Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 9:12 a.m.

A funny trip :D


Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 6:06 a.m.

I know; let's imprison him in a place where the weather is unpredictable and there are is no chance employment. Now where would that be?


Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 3:21 a.m.

He couldn't eek another 100 bucks out of them for an even 6k pay off? Drug dealers must be getting cheap these days. The war on drugs is working!


Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 12:56 a.m.

Wow, what a vacation in a short time. man busted Great! Children in the back seat? I can't answer my own question, and it be printed.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 10:20 p.m.

Boy, did he seem eager to give up the goods. What if he was being coerced or blackmailed for some reason and was anxious to be caught. Would there be any pity?


Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 2:12 a.m.

He just spent nine days in the car with four kids. No mystery there...

David Briegel

Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 12:25 a.m.

Nah. This is the Brave New World!


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 7:15 p.m.

wow, that blows

John B.

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 8:54 p.m.

Har dee har har.... (Plus, that's a lotta blow...).

shadow wilson

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 5:48 p.m.

This allegedly crap is ridiculous.Is providing atty's for the accused ? What is the reason for this policy?


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 5:35 p.m.

When the economy is bad, desperate people take great chances.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 6:48 p.m.

And some are victims of poverty. This is regardless of whether or not they "could have worked harder," etc.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 6:10 p.m.

and allegedly use their minor children as a front when allegedly tansporting 3/4 of a million dollar cocaine hauls....bad parenting or childcare too expensive for alleged drug runners? hmmm...


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 5:25 p.m.

It's not so much bad grammar as a badly placed modifier. Placing "allegedly" beside "arrested" makes it sound as though the reporter was not sure that that an arrest had taken place when it clearly had. A modifier such as the adverb "allegedly" should always be placed as close as possible to what it modifies, presumably in this case, the amount of the cocaine in the van, although since it was stated that the police seized the cocaine, I'm not even sure you could call that "alleged." I think clear writing is important in our only daily "paper," and I don't consider myself the grammar police for making suggestions for corrections. If you think young people are taught to write the way we oldsters were, you should try reading what not only high school but even college graduates write these days. A paragraph and even a sentence is beyond some of them. Sad but true. These journalists might be grateful for our suggestions if they have suffered the deficits in teaching that some have had.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 5:11 p.m.

As John Sinclair at Hash Bash once recited in his poem "It's All Good": "We salute our intrepid comrades who risk life and limb to supply us with the substatnces we require......" "We salute those housed in the vast penitentiaries of America as prisoners of the War on Drugs..............." "We salute you all...... because it's awwwlll goooood!"

Kelly Davenport

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 5:10 p.m.

The lede has been clarified. Thanks to those of you who raised the question.

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 8:15 p.m.


Macabre Sunset

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 7:29 p.m.

It's not there any more, so the lede was allegedly clarified. Keep up, people.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 6:30 p.m.

&quot;The lede has been clarified&quot; You did that on purpose, just to make somebody look foolish, didn't you? Well played. <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:59 p.m.

I also don't think that is bad grammar. Correct me if I am wrong.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:58 p.m.

Damn. The grammar police have under surveillance!


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 6:04 p.m.

I'm allegedly writing this. I am writing this... Sloppy writing at the very least. One would think articles would be written to reflect A2 as a haven of intellect...

Craig Lounsbury

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 5:02 p.m.



Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:55 p.m.

The misplaced &quot;allegedly&quot; bothered me too. Please correct that first sentence,


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:51 p.m.

Sentence allegedly bested Monday night.... Sentence 2...he was arrested about 9:04 pm... So when do you get confirmation on the alleged bust or is the writer making an assumption on the arresy? Asuumptions are the common basis for comments being removed...Also, was his wife allegedly busted as an accessory? Did Child Protective Services garner custody of the minor children? Details?


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:49 p.m.

Under state law the mandatory sentence for possession of such quantities of cocaine is parolable life in prison ( it used to be life in prison without possibility for parole). Under federal law the alleged perpetrator faces a maximum of 15 years in prison.


Sun, Jul 17, 2011 : 4:11 p.m.

&quot;Life&quot; sentence is more like 20 years. A few guys I used to know have recently been paroled after trafficking convictions in 1989, 1990. No, I don't know them now, and I'm not proud of ever knowing them. Trafficking was the least of some of those guys' crimes.

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:34 p.m.

&quot;A man allegedly busted Monday night with 10 kilograms of cocaine during a traffic stop on the west side of Ann Arbor had four of his children in his van with him, federal court records show.&quot; No, he was busted, not allegedly busted, unless you question the fact that he was charged. But you don't because in the next paragraph, you add, &quot;was charged Tuesday in a federal criminal complaint&quot; and then in the paragraph after that you add &quot;was arrested.&quot; He allegedly committed the crime, but was definitely busted. That is, arrested.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 8:48 p.m.

there could totally be a &quot;Allegedly&quot; Monty Pythons skit

Joe Friday

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 6:06 p.m.

No he was &quot;allegedly busted with 10 alleged kilograms of alleged cocaine during an alleged traffic stop, allegedly on the west side of Ann Arbor with he alleged children in his van alleged federal court records show.&quot;


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:55 p.m.

I think they wanted to convey that he was allegedly busted &quot;with ten kilos of cocaine.&quot; Not that he was allegedly busted in general.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:41 p.m.

If this person is guilty I hardly think he was getting $5000 to run $770,00 worth of coke


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 11:34 p.m.

Tesla, does it matter if the accused knew the dollar value? It's actually not a big bust by today's standards.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 7:46 p.m.

@tesla, can we assume the arrestee had no inkling of what he was allegedly transporting? I can't imagine any parent using their kids in such a manner as the allegedly mule alledgely used his children...but then again...criminals don't think like normal citizens.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:53 p.m.

The total dollar value of the cocaine is up for debate. They will claim it as a Million dollar seizure because if sold in grams it would be worth that much. The accused may not have known what the dollar value of his cargo was.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:43 p.m.

$5000 for a week's worth of non-physical &quot;work&quot; isn't a bad payoff. People do a lot more physical (albeit legit) work for a lot less, so I believe it is feasible somebody would do this for $5k.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:40 p.m.

Allegedly, Hollywood is all over this. Chevy Chase has already received the script for National Lampoon's Drug Mule Vacation.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 7:07 p.m.

Allegedly, Jennifer Granholm will be tweeting about this as it involves a Canadian who is passing through Michigan...

Jen Eyer

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:35 p.m.

A reminder that we discourage posts that presume guilt on the part of the accused. Using &quot;allegedly&quot; or &quot;if he is guilty&quot; will help keep your comments from being blocked.

Macabre Sunset

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 7:28 p.m.

Ana Gasteyer was much funnier when she read this line on The Good Wife.

Jen Eyer

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 5:07 p.m.

Obviouscomment: No, it isn't. I have responded to the questions there.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:15 p.m.

is it just me, or is moving comments to the &quot;moderation policy thread&quot; just a way of ignoring them, obviously you could all care less about those comments

Kelly Davenport

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:46 p.m.

A comment concerning the moderation policy was moved to the moderation policy thread posted by Jen earlier today.

Craig Lounsbury

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:38 p.m.


Jen Eyer

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:53 p.m.

I'm happy to answer questions regarding this policy on the moderation thread: <a href=""></a>


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:16 p.m.

If the State police already had the K-9 unit with them, then they had a tip. This is the second arrest in the Ann Arbor area for cocaine in recent months from a person from Canada. As mentioned by the article, the police did not give the reason why the vehicle was pulled over. If you're hauling cocaine and your a low-level errand boy, you will attempt not to draw attention to yourself or vehicle, thus the kids, which might had provided a good cover. Why would you speed, have a taillight out, etc. Interesting that the officer that pulled Wiebe over, immediately placed him in the back of the patrol car, then proceeded to question the passenger. It seems pretty clear that there is a drug cartel within Canada willing to use low level couriers. Heck if you're driving that far (Canada to LA and back), get off I-80. Use I-94 and go through Minnesota, Wisconsin. There are plenty other points of entry into Canada.

Matt Cooper

Fri, Jul 15, 2011 : 1:52 a.m.

racer, you're kidding...right? One ofc., working alone, will not usually pull two suspects out of the car at the same time. Why would he want to place himself in a position to be out numbererd? Also, when you get pulled over in the state of Michigan, each and every adult occupant of the car is subject to verification of identity. This is why they usually ask for ID's for each person in the car. Thirdly, K9 units work patrols just as does every other police unit. They don't just sit around the station waiting for calls to go sniff for drugs or bodies or other contraband. Finally, as bunny pointed out, it is very common for the ofc. to seperate the suspects in order to question both, looking for inconsistincies in their stories. This is all common sense and not very complicated.


Fri, Jul 15, 2011 : 1:17 a.m.

at Racerx, it is common to try and seperate people in this situation, to see how their stories match up. @ sportsgirl, or the other patrol cars were there incase the dude didn't pull over and a car chase ensued.

Sports Girl

Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 3:47 p.m.

I was driving to Jackson that evening and saw this vehicle pulled over. There was another state car assisting with the stop. However, within one mile of this stop on 94, I saw two more State patrol cars waiting to pull people over. They very well could have gotten lucky knowing that 94 is a drug corridor. And, frankly it seems logical to have a K9 unit close by...


Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 3:15 p.m.

@Matt Cooper-I can only assume by what was written. The article states that it was a K-9 unit that pulled the van over. How often is there a K-9 unit on M-14 on patrol for speeders? Secondly, having placed the driver into his patrol car, the officer then questioned the passenger. Seems strange that the officer, who I presume was along, place the driver in the patrol and then walked back to question the passenger. Why not ordered both of them out of the vehicle in case the passenger had a weapon while placing the driver in the patrol car? This seems strange. Maybe, based on prior information, the officer didn't assume that the passenger was a threat.

Matt Cooper

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:15 p.m.

LOL Wow! You assume a lot racer. &quot;Interesting that the officer that pulled Wiebe over, immediately placed him in the back of the patrol car, then proceeded to question the passenger.&quot; Define &quot;Immediately&quot;. &quot;If the State police already had the K-9 unit with them, then they had a tip.&quot; And you know Perhaps the guy was simply speeding and got caught. Have you ever driven M-14 between Plymouth and I-94? People there speed like maniacs all the time.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:46 p.m.

you are correct, there was probably a tip, but the van was probably under survillance when it first entered the US across the states and back. Where it was stopped in Michigan. That is why there is always a K-9 team that happens to pull them over. At some point a tracking device is placed somewhere on the vehicle, these usually have a two day life on them (if battery operated) and need to be replaced or a new one put on, a van or delivery truck is usually within range to pick up the signal which has the DEA team on it. Just getting off I-94 won't do it, if you divert from the route you would just be pulled over in another state on the other road. these busts really aren't going after the mules, they want the bigger fish, the mules usually can plea to lesser offenses in exchange for information. In this case one option is to have restrictions placed on entering the US for x number of years. my belief is there is an informate in the bigger fishes network, someone that agreed to inform in exchange for a deal on charges at one point or exclusion from prosecution. additionally, while the goal is to get them while inside the US this is often in tandem with the RCMP.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:15 p.m.

I see all these comments on the right to refuse a search.Someone correct me if I'm wrong but I didn't think non U.S citizens were covered by the Constitution


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:17 p.m.

You are wrong on this. Anyone in the US, citizen or not, has with few exceptions the full protections of the US constitution.

Craig Lounsbury

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:02 p.m.

&quot;Coming into Los Angeles Bringing in a couple of keys Don't touch my bags if you please Mister Customs Man&quot;

Craig Lounsbury

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:42 p.m.

In the interest of proper credit : written by Arlo Guthrie circa 1965-68 played at Woodstock 1969

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:02 p.m.

Speaking as an experienced dad, if you ask me, $5900 is no where near enough money to drive 4000 miles over 9 days with four kids in the bask seat. Good Night and Good Grief

Sports Girl

Sun, Jul 17, 2011 : 4:45 p.m.

I couldn't agree with you more, CB! He probably was driving erratically from yelling at the kids, or saw the cops and decided it was better than riding with them any longer...the peace and quiet of a cell was just too tempting. And, I get it!!!


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 7:03 p.m.

Not to be confused with a &quot;basque seat&quot;, which would date to 18th century France

sun runner

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:52 p.m.

I'd like a vehicle with a hot tub in the back! Sounds great to me.

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:29 p.m.

A back seat. A &quot;bask seat&quot; would be a hot tub.

sun runner

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:11 p.m.

&quot;along with four of Wiebe's juvenile children.&quot; I assume this means they were all under 18.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:09 p.m.

Well, all the facts aren't in. It's possible that if the dad is in his 60's that the kids are in their 30's.

David Briegel

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:07 p.m.

You wouldn't &quot;bask&quot; in the experience?

Craig Lounsbury

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:03 p.m.

well played sir, well played indeed.

Michigan Man

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:01 p.m.

I pesume the State, County and City can now share in the bounty/booty now confiscated? This is great news! This windfall income should help with the financial status of the above entities. How do they dispose of the cocaine? Can the disposition of 10 Kilos generate any income for the State, County and City?

David Briegel

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 1:37 p.m.

Another victim of the futile War on Drugs/Sanity. A low level, know nothing mule who will be hailed as a huge success/victory. Another family destroyed.

David Briegel

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 9:46 p.m.

Just you cinnabar, just you.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 6:41 p.m.

johnny, please don't make me defend Rush Limbaugh because it is painful. But he wasn't moving 10 kilos. His was for personal consumption.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 6:16 p.m.

Last I checked, the person who has their life ruined by cocaine or any other drug (including nicotine) did it of their own free will. So if their family is ruined by it, then that is an issue they should take up with the addict. This guy will spend time in prison, while Rush Limbaugh uses a much more harmful drug illegally and goes to rehab. Sounds like the American way, the rich skate, while those that make an effort to provide for their family are incarcerated.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:45 p.m.

Briegel save it for the familys that would have been detroyed by the drug he was alleged to carried. Briegle in your mind is anybody accountable for their actions?

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:28 p.m.

This alleged guy allegedly destroyed his own alleged family when he allegedly decided to allegedly commit an alleged crime. Allegedly. Good alleged night and good alleged grief.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:08 p.m.

You really have a loose definition of the word &quot;victim&quot;. Destroyed? Yes, by self-immolation.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 1:36 p.m.

Don't know if there are any &quot;legal loopholes&quot;, but the investigation stops here. I guess all the DEA wanted was this mule and the headline. Congratulations, you're famous.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:41 p.m.

I am a bit surprised that this story came out. I would expect them to make a deal with the driver upon turning the goods over at the pick up and naming the people who hired him. Perhaps he is less afraid of prison than his employer. &quot;His Dodge Caravan&quot; is now the property of either the MSP or DEA. Real amateur to have not used a rental car.

Tom Smith

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 2:25 p.m.

And, maybe, the 10 Kg of coke.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 1:05 p.m.

I guess A2 is the main corridor for drug runners as of late, nice sting operation. Let the victim drive 2,600 miles and nab him just before the finish line. Hopefully the State trooper had a probable cause to pull over this individual, it may be a hard case to uphold if he didn't, unless they knew he was transporting, which they probably did.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 7:58 p.m.

For what its worth, I'm pretty sure the trooper only needed reasonable suspicion to pull him over - and it doesn't have to be suspicion of drug smuggling, it can be suspicion of any violation of law (i.e. not using his blinker properly). He did need probably cause to arrest him - which he of course got when the fellow consented to a search (perhaps thinking his buddies adequately hid the coke).


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 1:57 p.m.

A2 isn't the main corridor, I-94 interstate is! You can find stories all up and down it with regards to drug busts.


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 12:56 p.m.

Sounds like a fun family road trip. Repeat after me: I do not consent to a search, officer. Am I free to leave or am I under arrest?

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 9:50 a.m.

You forgot the magic word, &quot;allegedly.&quot;


Thu, Jul 14, 2011 : 2:14 a.m.

I got deleted for saying this guy made a bad choice to traffic 10 kilo's of cocaine and put his wife and children in harms way. how is that against your policy?

Matt Cooper

Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 4:09 p.m.

&quot;I do not consent to a search, officer. Am I free to leave or am I under arrest?&quot; Answer: &quot;Sir, you are being detained until I complete my investigation. (Placing the detainee in handcuffs) Have a seat in my car.&quot;


Wed, Jul 13, 2011 : 3:18 p.m.

Consent or not, this guy was not going anywhere. All it would take is the dog hitting on the car. That constitutes probable cause and a search. A search warrant is not needed to search a vehicle.