San Clemente, Calif. - During the long Presidents Day weekend, U.S. Border Patrol agents at the checkpoint on Interstate 5 near San Clemente netted three narcotic seizures valued at a total of more than $750,000.
The first seizure occurred on Saturday morning when two men traveling in a Chrysler Pacifica sedan were stopped at the checkpoint. A Border Patrol canine team conducted an exterior search of the vehicle and alerted agents to the possible presence of contraband. The agents searched the interior of the sedan and discovered 36.56 pounds of crystal methamphetamine concealed within modified compartments built in the floor of the vehicle.
The agents arrested the vehicle's 26-year-old male driver and a 38-year-old male passenger, both of whom are Mexican nationals. The two subjects and the narcotics, which had an estimated street value of $658,150, were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration.
The second seizure occurred Saturday afternoon when agents seized 126 pounds of marijuana they found inside the rear cargo area of a Jeep Grand Cherokee. Upon the discovery, Border Patrol agents arrested the driver, a 26-year-old male U.S. citizen, who was later relinquished to the San Diego Sheriff's Department along with the marijuana. The estimated street value of the marijuana was $63,150.
Agents made the weekend's third seizure on Monday morning when they arrested a 46-year-old female U.S. citizen. She was suspected of attempting to smuggle 16.05 ounces of crystal methamphetamine inside a small musical amplifier found in a Toyota Corolla. The Drug Enforcement Administration assumed custody of the subject and the narcotics, which had an estimated street value of $45,510.
The U.S. Border Patrol continues to maintain a defense-in-depth enforcement strategy through the use of checkpoints to detect, apprehend and deter smugglers of humans, drugs and other contraband.