SALTON CITY – El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents arrested a man suspected of smuggling drugs imbedded in the frame of his vehicle Tuesday afternoon at the Highway 86 checkpoint, according to a release issued by U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
The arrest occurred at approximately 4:30 p.m., when a 31-year-old man approached the Border Patrol checkpoint driving a 1998 tan Toyota Camry sedan.
As the vehicle neared the primary inspection booth, a Border Patrol K9 team was alerted to the vehicle, and referred the driver for a secondary inspection.
During the inspection, the K9 again was alerted to the undercarriage of the Toyota. A search of the vehicle revealed a non-factory compartment under the rear seat area. In the compartment, agents found 11 plastic wrapped bundles which tested positive for the characteristics of methamphetamine.
“Every seizure our agents make is a step forward toward securing our streets and homes from dangerous narcotics and dangerous people,” said David S. Kim, Assistant Chief Patrol Agent. “I commend our agents for the hard work and dedication in keeping our communities safe.”
The narcotics had a combined weight of 21.1 pounds with an estimated street value of $84,400.
The man, who is a United States citizen as well as the vehicle, and narcotics were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration for further investigation.
In fiscal year 2017, El Centro Sector has seized more than 171.1 pounds of methamphetamine.