MURRIETA, Calif.—U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested a man on Tuesday morning who had more than thirty-two pounds of China White heroin hidden inside his car.
At approximately 9 a.m., agents patrolling Interstate 15 observed a 2002 Volkswagen Passat headed north. They initiated a vehicle stop to question the 21-year-old U.S. citizen driver. The man claimed he was going to Temecula to visit his uncle.
During the vehicle stop, a nearby K-9 alerted to the man’s Volkswagen and agents asked and received permission to search the vehicle at the nearby checkpoint. Once at the I-15 checkpoint, agents observed some oddities with the vehicle’s heat shield. They searched the area and discovered an after-market compartment built into the car’s exhaust tunnel. When they removed the access cover, they found 24 bundles of China White heroin wrapped in cellophane.
The heroin weighed approximately 32.63 pounds and has an estimated street value of $636,400.
Agents arrested the man for possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute. He was turned over to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Special Investigative Bureau and faces state charges. The vehicle was seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.
To prevent the illicit smuggling of humans, drugs, and other contraband, the U.S. Border Patrol maintains a high level of vigilance on corridors of egress away from our Nation’s borders. To report suspicious activity to the U.S. Border Patrol, contact San Diego Sector at (619) 498-9900.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.