SAN DIEGO—In Aug. 2017, Border Patrol agents arrested 25-year-old Jorge Rivera, a man who used a remotely operated drone to smuggle 13 pounds of methamphetamine into the United States. Rivera’s trial concluded last week and the jury sentenced him to 12-years in prison.
The original incident occurred on the evening of Aug. 8, 2017. Border Patrol agents observed a drone flying over the border fence approximately two miles west of the San Ysidro Port of Entry. Agents on all-terrain vehicles responded and located a man on foot in the vicinity. He was carrying a large bag filled with bundles of methamphetamine. The small drone was located nearby beneath some brush.
Deputy Chief Patrol Agent Roy D. Villareal commented on the recent sentencing stating, “We appreciate the determination, persistence, and hard work of all law enforcement partners involved in the case. The United States Attorney’s Office and its diligent efforts have resulted in a successful prosecution and conviction, and a sentencing that should deter this type of criminal activity in the future.”
To prevent the illicit smuggling of humans, drugs, and other contraband, the U.S. Border Patrol maintains a high level of vigilance on corridors of egress away from our Nation’s borders. To report suspicious activity to the U.S. Border Patrol, contact San Diego Sector at (619) 498-9900.
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.