Officers pulled the car over after spotting the driver on his mobile phone last week.
After making checks, it was revealed there was no insurance in place, and the car did not have a valid MOT.
When officers said they would be seizing the car, the driver made a run for it - but was arrested a short while later.
A police spokesman said: “Some checks of the car revealed it didn’t have any insurance or a valid MOT, so the man was informed the car was going to be seized – he didn’t seem too happy with this and pleaded for us not to take the car away.
“He quickly locked it up and made a run for it (on a busy dual carriageway!) but didn’t get very far before he was detained and arrested on suspicion of obstructing a police officer, driving without insurance, driving without MOT and “then theft after we came across the 169 packets of tobacco in a laundry bag.”
The spokesman added that an investigation into the suspected theft is ongoing.