Tucson, AZ - More than 1,900 pounds of marijuana with an estimated value of almost $974,000 was seized and a stolen vehicle was recovered by Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents in two separate incidents yesterday.
Early Thursday, agents from the Nogales Station apprehended a Mexican national who had illegally entered the U.S. and was in possession of 134 pounds of marijuana valued at nearly $67,000. The subject and narcotics were transported to the Nogales Station for processing. Prosecution is being sought against the subject on federal drug charges.
In another incident, Casa Grande Station agents working with the Arizona Department of Public Safety in the Vekol Valley area recovered a stolen vehicle and seized 84 bundles of marijuana. A DPS air crew observed a suspicious vehicle hidden in brush one mile south of Interstate 8. Agents responded to the location and discovered an abandoned pick-up truck loaded with more than 1,800 pounds of marijuana. A records check revealed the truck was reported stolen out of Glendale, Ariz. The marijuana, worth an estimated $907,000, and vehicle were turned over to DPS as the primary agency in charge of the operation.
The DPS and Border Patrol joint operation was made possible by the Alliance to Combat Transnational Threats, a multi-agency agreement between federal, state, tribal and local law enforcement to work in partnership as a way to deny, degrade, disrupt and dismantle smuggling organizations. Multiple agencies have participated in various operations concentrated in Pinal County and Vekol Valley. These efforts demonstrate an unprecedented level of cooperation, coordination and communication that is taking place between agencies across Arizona.
Since launching the Southwest Border Initiative in March 2009, the Department of Homeland Security has made significant investments toward establishing a secure and safe border environment to improve the quality of life throughout Arizona's communities.
The Border Patrol welcomes assistance from the community. Suspicious activity can be reported by calling their toll free number, (877) 872-7435. All calls will be answered and remain anonymous.