NILAND, Calif. –Thursday, El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents assigned to the Indio Station arrested a suspected drug smuggler after discovering more than five pounds of methamphetamine inside of an aftermarket compartment of a car battery.
The incident occurred at approximately 12:45 p.m., when Border Patrol agents encountered a 26-year-old man driving a brown Nissan Altima at the Highway 111 checkpoint.
During pre-primary inspection a Border Patrol canine alerted to the vehicle. Agents referred the man to the secondary inspection area for further investigation. Border Patrol agents subsequently discovered a package of methamphetamine hidden in a false compartment of the vehicle’s battery.
The methamphetamine had a combined weight of 5.5 pounds with an estimated street value of more than $50,000.
The man, a United States citizen, the vehicle, and the narcotics were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration for further investigation.
Last fiscal year, El Centro Sector seized more than 445 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.