Tucson, Ariz. - Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents seized an abandoned vehicle yesterday in the west desert loaded with more than 1,800 pounds of marijuana valued at an estimated $909,000.
An Ajo Station Mobile Surveillance System operator observed a vehicle traveling off road on the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, west of Lukeville, Ariz. Agents from the Ajo station's All Terrain Unit and a CBP Office of Air and Marine helicopter responded to the area and located the vehicle concealed under a camouflaged tarp. Inside the vehicle were 80 bundles of marijuana. The marijuana and vehicle were transported to the Ajo Station for processing.
As a result of the Border Patrol's increased efforts to disrupt and deny transnational criminal organizations from operating in the Tucson Sector, smugglers will often abandon their drug loads rather than risk apprehension and face prosecution. Surveillance technology assists agents' efforts to detect and interdict threats, and provides greater situational awareness in remote border areas.
Since launching the Southwest Border Initiative in March 2009, the Department of Homeland Security has made significant investments toward establishing a secure, safe border environment while improving the quality of life throughout Arizona communities.
The Border Patrol welcomes assistance from the community. Report suspicious activity by calling toll free (877) 872-7435. All calls will be answered and will remain anonymous.