SALTON CITY, Calif. – El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents assigned to the Highway 86 checkpoint, arrested a man suspected of smuggling methamphetamine inside his vehicle’s gas tank on Saturday morning.
The incident occurred at approximately 9:15 a.m., when a 26-year-old man approached the checkpoint in a 2012 Hyundai Accent. Before the driver reached the primary inspection area, a Border Patrol canine detection team alerted to the driver’s side of the vehicle.
Agents referred the man to secondary inspection for a closer inspection of the vehicle.
Upon further inspection, Border Patrol agents found 24 packages stuffed inside the vehicle’s gas tank. Agents tested the contents of the packages. That test indicated a positive for characteristics of methamphetamine.
The total weight of the methamphetamine was 26.41 pounds with an estimated street value of $92,435.
Gas tanks are a common hiding place drug traffickers use to smuggle their narcotics.
The man, a United States citizen, the vehicle and narcotics were turned-over to the Drug Enforcement Administration for further investigation.
In fiscal year 2018, El Centro Sector has seized more than 223.95 pounds of methamphetamine.
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.