Border Patrol Seizes $1.8 Million in Narcotics
TUCSON, ARIZ.—During multiple weekend seizures, Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents seized 3,572 pounds of marijuana and 5.15 pounds of black-tar heroin with a combined value of approximately $1.8 million.
Ajo Station agents using mobile surveillance equipment detected a suspicious vehicle in the west desert Friday. During a search of the area, agents located an abandoned GMC Yukon containing approximately 1,845 pounds of marijuana worth about $922,500. Agents transported the pot to the Ajo station for processing. The vehicle had been reported stolen and was turned over to the Tohono O'odham Police Department.
Also on Friday, a Nogales Station canine unit working at the Interstate 19 checkpoint alerted to a shuttle van. The vehicle was referred to secondary inspection where the canine located a bag containing eight small bundles of black-tar heroin weighing 5.15 pounds and worth approximately $73,600. The drugs were transported to the Nogales Station for processing.
Early Saturday, Ajo agents training with the All-Terrain Unit responded to suspicious activity in the west desert. Agents searched the area and located 15 bundles of marijuana weighing about 781 pounds and worth $390,500. Eight people were arrested in connection with the marijuana. The marijuana and subjects were transported to the Ajo Station for processing. The subjects face federal charges.
In another incident Saturday, agents from the Sonoita Border Patrol Station responded to illegal activity west of Sonoita and arrested three Mexican nationals transporting 247 pounds of marijuana. The subjects and marijuana, valued at $123,500, were transported to the Sonoita Station for processing. The subjects may face federal charges.
Early Sunday, Ajo agents discovered two abandoned all-terrain vehicles loaded with 31 bundles of marijuana weighing approximately 699 pounds and valued at $349,500. The vehicles and marijuana were discovered with assistance from a CBP Air and Marine helicopter crew.
The experience and dedication of Border Patrol agents continue to be invaluable tools in fighting transnational criminal organizations. Vigilance displayed by Border Patrol agents remains an obstacle for drug traffickers attempting to operate within the Tucson Sector.
Customs and Border Protection welcomes assistance from the community. Citizens can report suspicious activity to the Border Patrol and remain anonymous by calling (877)-872-7435 toll free.
All CBP assets in Arizona were realigned under a unified command structure in February 2011. Joint Field Command - Arizona unifies the Tucson and Yuma Border Patrol Sectors and Air Branches, as well as the Tucson Field Office, to enhance border security, commercial enforcement and trade facilitation missions to meet Arizona's unique challenges. Follow us on Twitter @CBPArizona.