Border Patrol nets $1.2M in narcotics seizures

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U.S. Border Patrol agents discovered narcotics inside the spare tire of a pickup truck.

SAN DIEGO — According to a press release, U.S. Border Patrol agents seized more than $1.2 million in heroin, methamphetamine, and cocaine from a pair of incidents yesterday in San Diego County.

The first incident took place at the Border Patrol checkpoint on westbound Interstate 8 near Pine Valley. At about 7 a.m., an agent encountered a 36-year-old man who arrived at the checkpoint driving a Dodge Dakota pickup truck. The driver was referred to a secondary inspection, where a Border Patrol K-9 alerted to the rear of the vehicle. Agents conducted a search and reportedly found five bundles of heroin and 14 bundles of methamphetamine concealed in the vehicle’s spare tire.

The heroin weighed 13.2 pounds and has an estimated street value of $184,800. The bundles of methamphetamine totaled 41.36 pounds and is valued at $140,624, the press release said.

A separate incident took place at about noon, when agents encountered a 21-year-old male driver and 26-year-old male passenger of an Audi A4 sedan at a gas station on Deer Springs Road, near Interstate 15 in Escondido. During the encounter, a Border Patrol K-9 reportedly alerted agents to conduct a search of the sedan, resulting in the discovery of 23 bundles of cocaine that was stashed in a man-made compartment built into the vehicle’s exhaust system. Agents arrested the driver and passenger on suspicion of drug smuggling after making the discovery.

The bundles of cocaine weighed 58.46 pounds and has an estimated street value of $876,900.

The suspected smugglers and narcotics from both incidents were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration. The Dodge Dakota and Audi A4 were seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.

These incidents follow three other narcotics seizures that occurred earlier this week, according to the press release.