Murrieta, Calif. - Yesterday afternoon, U.S. Border Patrol agents working near the I-15 checkpoint in Murrieta arrested a 24-year-old male Mexican national for smuggling more than 26 pounds of cocaine concealed inside a Lincoln LS sedan.
At about 1:20 p.m., agents stopped the male suspect as he was driving the sedan northbound on Interstate 15 near the Border Patrol checkpoint. During questioning, agents became suspicious of the man's inconsistent answers and requested the assistance of a Border Patrol K-9 team. The K-9 team arrived at the scene of the vehicle stop and performed a cursory inspection of the vehicle, which produced a positive alert for the presence of narcotics.
Agents transported the driver and his vehicle to the I-15 checkpoint for a more thorough inspection. During their search, agents discovered a total of ten bundles of cocaine hidden in the rear bumper and behind the rear wheel well. The cocaine weighed a total of 26.45 pounds, with an estimated street value of $264,554.
Agents arrested the suspected smuggler and turned him and the cocaine over to the Drug Enforcement Administration.
To prevent illicit smuggling of humans, drugs and other contraband, the U.S. Border Patrol maintains a high level of vigilance on major corridors of egress away from our nation's borders.
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.