Border Patrol Weekend: Seized $1.7 Million in Pot, Removed 2 People from Car Trunk, Rescued 1 from Well
TUCSON, ARIZ.—Some Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents spent their weekend seizing more than 3,000 pounds of marijuana; removing two illegal immigrants from a car trunk; and retrieving one man from the bottom of a 20-foot deep well.
Beginning with Ajo Station, Border Patrol agents discovered an abandoned Ford F-150 Friday near mile marker 17 on Federal Route 21 filled with 1,839 pounds of marijuana worth an estimated $919,500. No arrests were made. The vehicle was turned over to the Tohono O'Odham Police Department after a record check revealed the truck had been reported stolen.
Later that evening, Nogales Station agents at the I-19 checkpoint removed two illegal immigrants hiding in the trunk of a Nissan Altima. The immigrants were discovered after a detection dog alerted to their presence. The vehicle's driver faces federal prosecution for human smuggling.
Saturday, Willcox Station agents located an abandoned Chevy pickup near Tombstone, loaded with 77 bundles of marijuana. The dope weighed 1,574 pounds and was worth an estimated $787,000. A tracking operation was conducted in the area but agents were unable to find anyone associated with the vehicle.
Sunday, Nogales Station agents working the checkpoint south of Amado stopped a smuggler attempting to pass marijuana stashed in the vehicle's gas tank. A canine alerted to the vehicle and a subsequent x-ray of the car showed agents where the dope was hidden. After removing the gas tank, agents found 21 bricks of marijuana weighing 27 pounds and valued at $13,500. The driver and passenger were arrested for narcotics smuggling and face federal prosecution.
Sunday night, Border Patrol Search, Trauma and Rescue (BORSTAR) agents responded to assist Tohono O'Odham Fire and Police with the rescue of a man stuck at the bottom of a 20-foot deep well near Sells. Agents trained in technical rescue extracted the individual and assessed his medical condition. He was then was transported to an area hospital for further evaluation.
The Tucson Sector Border Patrol is determined to prevent dangerous contraband and individuals from being transported through Arizona. Checkpoints effectively restrict major routes of egress from the border, hindering smugglers' ability to move people, drugs and other contraband further into the United States.
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.
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.