DJ Clue -- one of the biggest hip hop DJs of all time -- was arrested in New York City this morning ... after cops say he was in possession of illegal pills.

38-year-old Clue -- who's worked with everyone from Notorious B.I.G. to DMX and Jay-Z -- was initially pulled over early Wednesday morning for a routine traffic violation ... and that's when cops discovered he was driving on a suspended license.

Police conducted a search and reportedly discovered three pills wrapped in tin foil.

Clue was taken into custody and according to NBC4 in New York, he was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance and aggravated unlicensed operator.

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