Imperial, Calif. - U.S. Border Patrol agents from the El Centro Sector recently rescued a distressed man in the desert and seized more than $1.5 million in narcotics.
The rescue occurred Friday at approximately 5:40 a.m., when Border Patrol agents assigned to the El Centro station located an injured man approximately 20 miles west of Calexico, Calif. The 39-year-old Mexican citizen claimed to have been stranded in the desert with a broken leg for several days. Border Patrol agents provided immediate care for the individual and contacted Emergency Medical Services. The man was transported to the El Centro Regional Medical Center for further treatment of his injuries. Agents later determined that the man had injured himself while making an illegal entry into the United States from Mexico.
Later that night at approximately 9:30 p.m., agents assigned to the Indio station encountered a red Toyota 4-Runner alongside the road near the Highway 86 Checkpoint. Agents became suspicious after interviewing the driver and requested that a canine team conduct a cursory inspection of the vehicle. The canine team alerted to the 4-runner and a thorough search resulted in the discovery of over 149 pounds of marijuana concealed within several non-factory compartments. The value of the marijuana is estimated at almost $120,000. The driver -- a 20-year-old male U.S. citizen -- was arrested and turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration along with the vehicle and narcotics.
The following day, at approximately 5:40 a.m., Border Patrol agents encountered a white Ford Windstar at the Highway 86 Checkpoint. While in secondary inspection, a canine team performed a cursory inspection of the vehicle which resulted in a canine alert. After a thorough search of the vehicle, agents discovered over 42 pounds of cocaine hidden inside several non-factory compartments. The value of cocaine is estimated at nearly $1.4 million. The driver - a 28-year-old male U.S. citizen -- was arrested and turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration along with the vehicle and narcotics.
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.