CHP officers, with the assistance of a City of Sonoma police dog, seized 50 pounds of marijuana and $14,000 in cash Thursday night during a traffic stop on Highway 12 in Glen Ellen.

A CHP officer had pulled over a white Nissan Altima rental car with three occupants at about 7:25 p.m. when he saw and flagged down a deputy from the Sonoma Police Department who happened to be with his K-9 partner.

The deputy, who along with the CHP officer was suspicious the trio might be transporting marijuana, said the suspects gave conflicting statements about their activities. They instructed Dickie, a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois/German Shepherd mix, to sniff around the outside of the car.

The dog then discovered drugs in the trunk, sealed in vacuum-packed bags. The driver of the car, Jeremiah Soria, 40, of Brookdale in Santa Cruz County, was arrested on suspicion of possession and transportation of marijuana for sale.

His passengers, both from New York, were released at the scene. They were not charged.