Tucson Sector Border Patrol Arrests Suspected Smugglers in West Desert
Tucson, Ariz. - On Wednesday, Tucson Sector Border Patrol agents assigned to the West Desert seized a combined total of 2,513 pounds of marijuana, recovered a stolen vehicle, and arrested two suspected smugglers.
On Wednesday morning, Ajo Station agents working near Highway 86 observed a suspicious pickup truck leave the highway and drive off the road. Agents subsequently located the vehicle abandoned in the brush with the assistance of a U.S. Customs and Border Protection helicopter. During further inspection of the vehicle, agents discovered 78 bundles of marijuana, weighing 1,714 pounds with an estimated value of $857,000. Later, agents found two subjects hiding in the brush approximately 25 yards away. A records check revealed the truck was reported stolen from Glendale. The truck was seized and turned over to the Tohono O'odham Police Department. The subjects, both Mexico nationals, were taken into custody and will be prosecuted on federal drug charges.
In a separate incident, agents using a mobile surveillance system detected illegal cross-border activity half a mile north of the border. Agents responded to the area and seized 15 abandoned bundles of marijuana. The marijuana, weighing approximately 799 pounds with an estimated value of $399,500, was seized and taken to the Ajo Border Patrol Station.
The Border Patrol regularly adapts and shifts resources to combat the flow of drugs into the United States. Coordination among CBP components improves response time and awareness, making it harder for transnational criminal organizations to operate.
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 and improving the quality of life throughout the communities in the state of Arizona.
The Border Patrol welcomes assistance from the community. Report suspicious activity by calling toll free (1-877) 872-7435. All calls will be answered and callers will remain anonymous.