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Border Patrol takes $1.2 million in illicit drugs off the streets

In separate drug smuggling incidents, Border Patrol agents working at the Interstate 8 and 5 checkpoints thwarted a pair of marijuana and cocaine smuggling attempts. The agents confirmed the seizure of cocaine and marijuana had an estimated street value of $1,196,445.

Yesterday, Border Patrol agents encountered a female 59-year-old U.S. citizen driving a BMW passing through the I-8 checkpoint just east of San Diego. The woman’s anxious and jumpy behavior concerned agents and they referred her to the checkpoint’s secondary inspection zone.

“A Border Patrol K-9 team performed a cursory inspection of the vehicle resulting in a positive alert,” according to Scott Simon, of the San Diego Border Patrol. “Agents searched the vehicle and discovered 40 bundles of cocaine in a non-factory compartment under the front floorboard. The cocaine weighed 117.55 pounds and had an estimated street value of $1,175,500.”

A second incident unfolded at the I-5 checkpoint north of San Diego near Camp Pendleton Marine base. A 22-year-old male Mexican national arrived at the checkpoint shortly after noon driving a Ford Windstar. After the Border Patrol K-9 team inspected the minivan, agents were alerted to a concealed compartment that stored 11 bundles of marijuana.

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Border Patrol agents searched the minivan, “and discovered six bundles of marijuana in the passenger-side, rear-quarter panel and five bundles in the spare tire located under the vehicle. The marijuana weighed a total of 41.89 pounds and had an estimated street value of $20,945.”

The U.S. Border Patrol seized both vehicles used in the narcotic smuggling incidents. The suspected smugglers, and their narcotics in both incidents were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for further investigation,” according to a CBP statement.

To report suspicious activity call the San Diego Border Patrol at (619) 498-9900.

© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak

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Border Patrol snags cocaine and meth worth $1 million

Border Patrol agents detained two suspected drug smugglers in separate stops that netted more than 100 pounds of cocaine and crystal methamphetamine with an estimated street value of $1.13 million.

The first stop involved a 30-year-old female Mexican national sitting in the driver’s seat of a Jeep Cherokee that was parked at a rest area located just north of Oceanside (The rest stop also shares a fence line with Camp Pendleton Marine Base on Interstate 5).

After questioning the woman, Border Patrol agents completed a consensual cursory search by a K-9 team. The Border Patrol K-9 dogs alerted agents to a positive scent in the Jeep. Following a brief search of the engine compartment, agents discovered 16 bundles of crystal meth concealed in the intake manifold. The drugs weighed nearly 11 pounds valued about $215,000.

Less than an hour later Border Patrol agents stopped a 27-year-old U.S. citizen driving to California from Arizona. The female arrived at the checkpoint east of San Diego where agents directed the driver to the secondary inspection area. Again the Border Patrol K-9 team alerted agents to drugs hidden underneath the car’s floorboards.

The U.S. Border Patrol seized both vehicles used in the narcotic smuggling incidents.Once the two aftermarket compartments were discovered, Border Patrol removed 30 bundles of cocaine. “The cocaine weighed 91.5 pounds with an estimated street value of $915,400. The suspected smugglers and narcotics in both incidents were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for further investigation,” according to a CBP statement.

Border Patrol agents encourage anyone who observes suspicious activity in the San Diego Sector to call (619) 498-9900.

© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak

CBP Agents seize Mexican-panga boat in Malibu loaded with pot

CBP agents apprehended illegal drug smugglers when they attempted to come ashore in the upscale community of Malibu. Officers immediately arrested three Mexican nationals following the interdiction when agents spotted numerous bales of marijuana.

The weekend bust made by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) confiscated approximately one-and-a-half tons of weed wrapped in cellophane.

CBP stated that they were working with the California National Guard when they spotted the panga-like vessel cruising slowly along the coastline. The National Guard unit alerted Border Patrol agents and the Los Angeles County Sheriffs, who responded to the Point Dume State Beach after midnight.

According to agents on the scene, the three men who illegally entered the U.S. were arrested and turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and will face multiple charges. The weight of the marijuana totaled 2,575 pounds and an estimated street value of $1, 287, 500.

“The Department of Homeland Security has increased coastal-border security in Southern California (as) transnational criminal organizations have shifted their smuggling tactics further north into Los Angeles and Ventura Counties,” Scott E. Simon,U.S. Border Patrol Agent for the San Diego Sector Information and Communication Division said. “As a result, CBP and its partners have intensified efforts to target the illegal activity, expanding the use of marine patrols, land-based surveillance, and collaboration with the Government of Mexico.”

These multi-agency task forces are a key component to interdict maritime drug smugglers along California’s 840-mile coastline.

The CBP logged 26 unauthorized maritime smuggling attempts during fiscal year 2011 in the Los Angeles/Ventura area. So far this year, 2012, the multi-agency CBP task force has recorded 14 maritime incidents along the southern California beaches, including three in Ventura County and one in Santa Barbara County.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak

© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

Border Patrol seizes nearly $1 million worth of illegal drugs in San Diego

Over the weekend, San Diego Border Patrol agents snagged more than $930,000 worth of cocaine, marijuana, and crystal methamphetamine.

“On Saturday, agents assigned to the Interstate 8 checkpoint near Pine Valley arrested a 26-year-old male United States citizen for attempting to smuggle 61.91 pounds of cocaine worth an estimated $619, 058,” Scott E. Simon, Border Patrol Agent for the San Diego Sector Communication Division said.

Simon said the drugs were discovered at the checkpoint’s secondary inspection area by K-9 dogs. The illicit drugs were located in a secret floorboard compartment.

“Our agents searched the vehicle (a BMW X5) and discovered 25 cellophane-wrapped brick-shaped bundles in natural voids beneath seats. The suspected smuggler and cocaine were taken into custody and subsequently turned over to a multi-agency drug task force,” Simon said.

In a separate incident, Border Patrol agents assigned to the Interstate 15 checkpoint stopped a Mexican national driving a Ford pickup. Again, it was a K-9 team that located illicit drugs.

“Agents searched and subsequently discovered a non-factory compartment beneath the bed of the truck in which 30 bundles of marijuana were concealed. The drugs weighed a total of 313.83 pounds and had an estimated street value of $156, 915,” according to Border Patrol.

Border Patrol agents arrested and turned over all the suspected drug smugglers to the proper authorities. All of the vehicles were seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.

Anyone with information regarding suspicious activity is encouraged to contact the San Diego Border Patrol at (619) 498-9900.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak

© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

Border Patrol confiscates more than $617,000 of Methamphetamine drugs

Border Patrol agents working north of San Diego at the Interstate 15 checkpoint nabbed two narcotic smugglers carrying 30 pounds of methamphetamine.

The agents stopped a male 20-year-old U.S. citizen driving a black Hummer H3 along with a 21-year-old male U. S. citizen passenger as they arrived at the freeway checkpoint. During the inspection process, BP agents became suspicious of the occupant’s nervous behavior and referred them to a secondary inspection area.

“A Border Patrol K-9 team performed a cursory inspection of the vehicle resulting in a positive alert,” said Scott Simon, Border Patrol Agent in the San Diego Sector Information and Communication Division.“Agents searched the vehicle and discovered a non-factory compartment in the rear cargo deck concealing a total of 20 bundles of methamphetamine.”

The illegal narcotics weighed approximately 31 pounds and had an estimated street value of $617,400, officials said. “The suspected smugglers and narcotics were taken into custody and subsequently turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration for further investigation. The Hummer H3 was seized by the U.S. Border Patrol,” Simon finished.
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In an effort to prevent illicit smuggling of humans, drugs, and contraband, the Border Patrol maintains a high level of vigilance on major U.S. corridors away from the nation’s borders. To report suspicious activity to the U.S. Border Patrol, contact San Diego Sector at (619) 498-9900.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak

© Copyright 2012 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

47 pounds of cocaine snagged by San Diego Border Patrol

U.S. Border Patrol agents snagged 47 pounds of cocaine just east of San Diego at the Interstate 8 checkpoint.

Yesterday Border Patrol agents encountered a 43-year-old male Mexican national driving a X3 BMW at the Pine Valley checkpoint, agents found the driver’s demeanor suspicious and sent the car to the secondary inspection station.

During the examination of the BMW, a Border Patrol K-9 team alerted agents to a positive alert inside the driver’s side door. The Border Patrol Agents searched the vehicle and found 20 bundles of cocaine concealed inside of the rocker panels on both sides of the vehicle, according to Scott E. Simon, Border Patrol Agent for the San Diego Sector Information & Communication Division.

“The cocaine weighed a total 47.09 pounds and had an estimated street value of $470,900,” Simon said. “The suspected smuggler and narcotics were taken into custody and subsequently turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration for further investigation. The BMW was seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.”

To report suspicious activity to the U.S. Border Patrol, contact San Diego Sector at (619) 498-9900.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak

© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

The holiday season doesn’t slow Mexican cartels from smuggling illicit drugs

It may be the Yuletide season, but that hasn’t stopped drug smugglers from wanting to earn some extra Christmas cash. This week in San Diego, Border Patrol agents played Grinch and snatched nearly $700,000 worth of cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine.

Yesterday, Border Patrol agents, patrolling along Interstate 15 stopped a 28-year-old male U.S. citizen driving a pickup truck. After the stop, agents called a Border Patrol K-9 team to conduct a cursory inspection of the vehicle. The K-9 positively alerted agents to the interior of the truck where agents discovered five bundles of methamphetamine in a black trash bag. “The total weight of the meth was 12.02 pounds and worth an estimated $240,400,” according to Border Patrol Agent Scott Simon.

In a separate bust, Border Patrol agents at the Interstate 8 checkpoint just east of San Diego, arrested a 23-year-old male Mexican national for smuggling 3.53 pounds of heroin worth $45,890 in the soles of two pairs of dress shoes.

“Agents encountered the individual while performing an immigration inspection of a commercial bus travelling to San Diego,” Scott said. “During inspection, agents became suspicious of the man’s nervous demeanor and referred him for a secondary inspection. A Border Patrol K-9 team alerted to the man’s luggage, where agents discovered packages of heroin hidden inside of a pair of brown shoes. Agents also located similar packages inside of a pair of black shoes the man was wearing.”

At the same I-8 checkpoint, Border Patrol detained a 39-year-old male U.S. citizen for attempting to smuggle 39.68 pounds of cocaine. The nervous driver was sent to secondary inspection, where a K-9 team led agents to the gas tank. Inside the tank, Border Patrol found 15 bundles of cocaine worth an estimated street value of $396,800.

All the suspected smugglers and $683,000 worth of narcotics were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and two pickup trucks were seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/kimberly-dvorak

© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

Mexican soldiers seize large “pot-throwing” catapults from cartels

With the nation’s southern border facing more scrutiny than ever before, it was the Mexican military that found large catapults typically used to sling illicit drugs over the border fence near Douglas, Arizona.

A statement released yesterday by Mexican authorities indicated they followed an anonymous tip to a border city neighborhood. Military troops entered an Agua Prieta house and located one catapult in a truck and another in the residence.

A search of the home led to the Mexican soldiers seizing 1.4 tons of marijuana that was headed to U.S. cities. Earlier this year, law enforcement agents said they nabbed two other drug-like catapults.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/homeland-security-in-national/kimberly-dvorak
© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.
To reach Kimberly Dvorak email; kimberly.dvorak@hotmail.com

Drug seizures in San Diego continue with Border Patrol

Interior Border Patrol checkpoints continue to slow drug smugglers progress and capture illicit drugs before they hit the streets. Yesterday, a Mexican national male, was apprehended when he tried to smuggle nine bundles of cocaine into the U.S.

“A Border Patrol K-9 team alerted to a blue 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee and agents subsequently discovered 21.2 pounds of cocaine hidden inside the vehicle’s spare tire with an estimated street value of $211,200,” according to Scott Simon, Border Patrol Agent from San Diego.

The alleged-drug smuggler and the cocaine were taken into custody and handed off to the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) to face charges.

Border Patrol Agents from interior checkpoints busted several U.S. citizens for trafficking marijuana this week. The agents found approximately 150 pounds of marijuana worth an estimated $200,000. All the alleged-drug smugglers were arrested and booked into county jail. Border Patrol Agents detained the marijuana and vehicles.
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Since October 1, 2010, the San Diego Sector Border Patrol has seized approximately 2,331 pounds of cocaine, 578 pounds of methamphetamine and 68,722 pounds of marijuana.

For more stories; http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/kimberly-dvorak

© Copyright 2011Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

Continue reading on Examiner.com Drug seizures in San Diego continue with Border Patrol – San Diego County Political Buzz | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/drug-seizures-san-diego-continue-with-border-patrol#ixzz1c7qyH2lc

The murder of New Mexico border rancher Larry Link remains unsolved

It’s been nearly six months since New Mexico rancher Larry Link was unexpectedly gunned down on his property and New Mexico State Police say they are no closer to solving the murder.
The lack of news about the June 7, 2011 murder weighs heavily on the minds of ranchers whose property straddles the international border with Mexico. However, most ranchers believe the crime was perpetrated by someone connected to the drug smuggling community.
Spokesperson for the New Mexico Police, Tim Johnson, indicated that locals in the region are perplexed that the murder investigation has not produced any leads and “encourages anyone with information to contact the State Police.”
The ranch where Link was executed is home to known-drug smuggling corridor. This murder falls on the heels of longtime Arizona rancher Rob Krentz, who was also killed by unknown assailants. These two unsolved slayings have forced property owners along the southern region to travel heavily-armed at all times.
A recent trip to Arizona’s border ranches highlighted the daily danger property owners and their ranch hands face on any given day. Most remain on a constant state of alert as they have been victims of break-ins, robberies and destruction of property.
“As you can see we have to carry multiple firearms with us at all times,” says Jim Chilton whose family has been ranching in Arizona since the 1800s. “We’ve had several break-ins and robberies. So far we haven’t been harmed by the rip crews (drug smugglers who rob from other human smugglers and property owners), but the criminals keep my wife and I prepared at all times.”
The Chilton ranch sees a daily barrage of drug smugglers seeking to deliver narcotics into the U.S. or illegal aliens seeking a “better life” in America. This steady flow of illicit activity forces ranchers to check fence lines every day. Chilton explains his ranch hands now have to travel armed and be ready to defend themselves from possible attacks- something ranchers never worried about a decade ago.
“We’ve had to add much more security to our homes in recent years for our safety,” he explained.
Even with the added security and permanent ranch hands Link’s murder lingers in the back of Chilton’s mind. “It was a senseless crime.”
Chilton knows a bit about senseless crimes; his ranch is a stone’s throw away from Rio Rico, Arizona where Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed by drug smugglers using the now infamous “fast and furious” guns.
“The canyons in this part of Arizona give the drug smugglers ample terrain to scout and traverse into America,” Chilton said.
He goes on to explain that he provides water fountains every quarter of a mile to keep the illegals from cutting water lines. Chilton also admits he does not report suspected illegal border crossers to the local authorities. “For reasons of safety and retaliation my wife and I do not report every crosser because we don’t want anyone to harm us.”
The Krentz and Link unsolved murders provide plenty of proof that staying outside the fray is the best policy.
In the meantime, ranchers will continue to protect their lives and property fiercely and hope they are not the next victims of druggers (a term Chilton uses referring to illegal drug smugglers).
Those with any information about the Larry Link murder can reach the New Mexico State Police at (575) 524-8827 or to report an anonymous tip, call Crime Stoppers at (575) 542-8827.
Congressional hearings on border issues set for Friday
Congressman Michael McCaul (R-TX) will chair a hearing on October 14th titled “A Call to Action: Narco-Terrorism’s Threat to the Southern U.S. Border” for the Homeland Security Oversight & Investigations Subcommittee will present to Congress a comprehensive military assessment of the U.S.-Mexico border.
A highlighted report, Texas Border Security: A Strategic Military Assessment, demonstrates that Mexican drug cartels are attempting to establish safe havens in the U.S. as a launching point into the rest of the United States. Among the findings the hearing will examine:
• Cartels’ intention to influence all levels of government throughout the Americas
• Cartels’ intention to establish sanctuary zones in the U.S. one county deep
• Poorly resourced U.S. tactical efforts to stop cartel incursions; vulnerability to corruption
• Increasing likelihood that competition to control distribution territories and corridors will result in greater violence in Texas, as the Mexican military gains more control in Mexico
• The need to designate Mexican drug cartels as Foreign Terrorist Organizations
“This report is a call to action. Every American needs to be aware of the threat these narco-terrorists pose to our communities in every state, and to our national security,” Rep. McCaul said. “To date, this administration has buried its head in the sand rather than confront the extraordinary magnitude of the cartels’ incursions and operations in the United States and the propensity for increased violence. If the White House does not heed the warning that now is the time to commit to a comprehensive strategy to secure the border, it unfortunately may take a catastrophic event to get their attention.”

To read the first story; UPDATE: New Mexico businessman Larry Link murdered on own property – San Diego County Political Buzz | Examiner.com http://www.examiner.com/county-political-buzz-in-san-diego/breaking-new-mexico-rancher-larry-link-murdered-by-illegal-alien#ixzz1QE7BoOXl

© Copyright 2011 Kimberly Dvorak All Rights Reserved.

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