Salton City, CA
El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents working at the Highway 86 immigration checkpoint arrested a man suspected of smuggling methamphetamine Tuesday morning.
The incident occurred at approximately 6:45 a.m. when a 61-year-old man driving a 2003 Ford Explorer approached the checkpoint. Border Patrol agents sent the vehicle to secondary inspection for a more thorough inspection.
At secondary inspection, Border Patrol agents further inspected the vehicle and discovered 26 packages hidden inside the vehicle’s spare tire. The contents of the packages were examined and tested positive for methamphetamine and cocaine.
The total weight of the methamphetamine was 20.51 pounds with an estimated street value of $65,632, while the cocaine totaled 17.69 pounds with an estimated street value of $265,360.
The man was determined to be a Lawfully Permitted Legal Resident and was turned over to the Drug Enforcement Agency along with the vehicle and narcotics. Spare tires are a common location drug smuggler’s hide their drugs.
Since fiscal year 2017, which started Oct. 1, 2016, the El Centro Sector has seized more than 1,096 pounds of methamphetamine and more than 477 pounds of cocaine.