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Rio Grande Valley Border Patrol Agents Seize Nearly $15M in Narcotics over the Weekend

Release Date: 
July 13, 2020

EDINBURG, Texas – U.S. Border Patrol agents seize cocaine and marijuana in separate incidents.

On Sunday afternoon, agents working near Rio Grande City, Texas, observed a Chevrolet pickup suspected of smuggling narcotics driving away from the Rio Grande. Agents and Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) troopers attempted to conduct a traffic stop. The driver of the pickup refused to stop for DPS and a pursuit ensued. The vehicle came to a stop after the driver lost control of the pickup and rolled over. As agents and troopers approached the wreck, the driver abandoned the vehicle and fled the scene. Near the bed of the truck, agents and troopers located several bags containing bundles of cocaine. The cocaine weighed more than 450 pounds and is worth an estimated $14.5M.

That same afternoon, agents working near Garceno, Texas, observed fresh shoe prints coming from the Rio Grande and heading further into the United States. Agents followed the trail and located six bundles of marijuana. As agents searched the immediate area, they observed several subjects jump into the Rio Grande and swim back to Mexico. The marijuana weighed over 300 pounds and is worth an estimated $240K.

Hours later, agents working near Roma, Texas, observed two rafts make landfall along the United States riverbank of the Rio Grande carrying several subjects and bundles of narcotics. As responding agents approached the group, the smugglers abandoned the bundles and fled to Mexico. Agents secured six bundles of marijuana weighing nearly 300 pounds and worth an estimated $240K. 

Additionally, Kingsville agents working at the Javier Vega Jr. Checkpoint referred a Dodge Van to the secondary inspection area after a canine alerted to the vehicle. At secondary, agents searched the van and discovered a jar containing marijuana and located a loaded 9mm handgun. Agents arrested the driver and passenger of the van and turned the case over to the Kenedy County Sheriff’s Office. This is the third weekend in a row that agents encountered subjects with loaded fire arms at RGV Sector checkpoints.  

The public is encouraged to take a stand against crime in their communities and report suspicious activity at 800-863-9382.

Even with the spread of the COVID-19 virus, human smugglers continue to try these brazen attempts with zero regard for the lives they endanger nor to the health of the citizens of our great nation.  The U.S. Border Patrol agents of the Rio Grande Valley Sector will continue to safeguard the nation and community against these criminal elements.

Please visit www.cbp.gov to view additional news releases and other information pertaining to Customs and Border Protection. Follow us on Twitter  @CBPRGV, @USBPChiefRGV and @USBPDepChiefRGV.

Last modified: 
July 13, 2020