SALTON CITY, Calif. – El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents assigned to the Highway 86 checkpoint arrested a man suspected of drug smuggling after discovering more than $700,000 worth of heroin and cocaine were discovered in his vehicle on Saturday.
The incident occurred at approximately 8 a.m., when Border Patrol agents encountered the driver of a 2002 Jeep Wrangler at the checkpoint.
A Border Patrol canine detection team alerted to the vehicle and agents referred the driver to secondary for further investigation. After an intensive search agents discovered a false compartment located underneath the cargo area of the vehicle. The compartment contained 20 packages of heroin and cocaine.
The heroin had a combined weight of 15.8 pounds with an estimated street value of more than $189,000. The cocaine had a combined weight of 32.7 pounds with an estimated street value of more than $523,000.
The man, a 21-year-old United States citizen, the vehicle, and narcotics were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration for further investigation.
Last fiscal year, El Centro Sector seized more than 186 pounds of heroin and 148 pounds of cocaine.
The El Centro Sector’s Community Awareness Campaign is a simple and effective program to raise public awareness on the indicators of crime and other threats. We encourage public and private sector employees to remain vigilant and play a key role in keeping our country safe. Please report any suspicious activity to the Border Community Threat Hotline at 1-800-901-2003.
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.