EDINGBURG, TEXAS—U.S. Border Patrol agents from the Rio Grande Valley Sector rescued a man who was struggling to stay afloat in the Rio Grande and seized more than 5 tons of marijuana in unrelated incidents over the weekend.
The man was rescued Monday after agents encountered him near a pump on the banks of the river. As the agents approached, he jumped into the water and grabbed onto a pipe that runs across an inlet. The man slipped from the pipe and went under the water. An agent straddled the pipe and quickly moved across to where the man was desperately trying to surface. The agent reached into the water and pulled the man out and onto the riverbank.
The man, who is a national of Honduras, was offered medical attention, but declined. He will be processed accordingly.
More than 1,000 pounds of marijuana were seized Saturday in Escobares, Texas, by agents assigned to the Rio Grande City Station. The agents were working near the river when they saw several people loading large bundles of marijuana into a Chevy Tahoe. The agents approached the group and identified themselves as Border Patrol agents, at which time the smugglers dropped the bundles, jumped into the river and swam to Mexico.
Another large seizure was made Monday near Mission, Texas, when agents observed several people carrying bundles of marijuana. As agents approached, the smugglers abandoned the marijuana and ran toward the river.
A helicopter from the Office of Air and Marine as well as agents patrolling the river by boat responded to the scene to provide assistance. Agents thoroughly searched the area with a Border Patrol K-9 and found nearly 900 pounds of marijuana.
Additional seizures from Friday through Monday brought the total amount of marijuana seized to more than 10,600 pounds, with an estimated value of more than $8.5 million. The marijuana was turned over to the appropriate authorities for further investigation.
To report suspicious activity, call the Rio Grande Valley Border Patrol Sector's toll-free telephone number at (800) 863-9382.
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.