Tucson, Ariz. - Tucson Sector agents, in two separate incidents, seized more than 700 pounds of marijuana yesterday with an estimated value close to $600,000.
The majority of marijuana was discovered near the Patagonia Mountains when agents assigned to the Sonoita Station began a tracking operation after finding footprints of several suspected illegal aliens. Agents followed the foot sign for two hours until they located 14 bundles of marijuana hidden in the brush.
Agents searched the area and found two subjects in connection with the marijuana. The subjects and marijuana were transported to the Sonoita Station for processing. The marijuana, weighing more than 600 pounds, has an estimated value of $530,000.
In a separate incident, agents assigned to the Nogales Station located an abandoned vehicle near the Interstate 19 checkpoint with five small bundles of marijuana inside. Agents searched the area but were unable to find anyone in connection to the vehicle. The marijuana, weighing more than 75 pounds and having an estimated value $63,000, and vehicle were taken to the Nogales Station for processing.
Since the interim checkpoint opened on Interstate 19, the Border Patrol has made it more difficult for smuggling organizations to operate. Traditional tracking methods also continue to be one of the more effective tools used by Border Patrol agents in the field. From Oct. 1, 2009, to August 31, 2010, the Tucson Sector Border Patrol seized more than 940,000 pounds of marijuana worth more than $750 million.
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.