San Clemente, California - Border Patrol agents arrested three U.S. citizens in two separate events at the San Clemente checkpoint during the last three days. Two men were smuggling methamphetamine and one man was smuggling marijuana.
At about 4 a.m. today, agents at the San Clemente checkpoint stopped two men in a 1999 Kia Sephia. The men claimed they were headed north to report for work at a construction site. The 24-year-old driver and his 18-year-old passenger were referred for a secondary inspection. Once in secondary, a nearby K-9 alerted to their car. Agents searched the vehicle and discovered 13 bundles of methamphetamine concealed inside a black duffle bag on the rear seat. The methamphetamine bundles weighed 29.48 pounds and are worth an estimated $294,800.
The second incident occurred on Tuesday at approximately 1:30 p.m. A 58-year-old male arrived at the checkpoint driving a 2006 Dodge Caliber. The man nervously claimed he was en route to a hospital in Santa Ana to visit a friend. Agents referred the man to secondary inspection, where a K-9 sniff resulted in an alert. Agents searched the car and found 25 plastic-wrapped bundles of marijuana floating inside the gas tank. The drugs weighed 40.15 pounds and have an estimated street value of $24,090.
All three suspects were arrested and turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration and face federal drug smuggling charges. The vehicles were seized by the U.S. Border Patrol.
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.