Officers seize $3.6M worth of drugs in 5 hours at Arizona-Mexico border

2014-05-16T12:09:00Z Officers seize $3.6M worth of drugs in 5 hours at Arizona-Mexico borderKimberly Matas Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
May 16, 2014 12:09 pm  • 

In just five hours Wednesday, Customs and Border Protection officers along the Arizona-Mexico border seized $3.6 million worth of marijuana, heroin and methamphetamine.

After a drug-sniffing dog detected narcotics in a tractor-trailer driven by a 36-year-old Mexico man at the Nogales port of entry around 1 p.m., officers searched the vehicle and found more than 6,700 pounds of marijuana divided into 465 packages, hidden in a non-factory compartment in the front wall of the trailer, according to a news release from the Department of Homeland Security.

The haul was worth an estimated $3.35 million.

Later in the afternoon, a drug dog sniffed out 14 pounds of meth and 3 pounds of heroin hidden in the gas tank and rear seats of a Nissan sedan driven by Luis Enrique Gonzalez-Murillo, 21, of Hermosillo, Sonora. The meth had a street value of $42,500. The heroin was worth $46,500.

During the same time period, officers at the Douglas port of entry also made two busts.

After a dog alerted to narcotics in a Saturn driven by Moises Torres-Zamora, 68, of Douglas, officers found 170 packages — 236 pounds — of marijuana from the bumpers and undercarriage of his car. The drugs were valued at $118,000.

A few hours later, Douglas officers inspected a Ford pickup truck driven by Jesus Fabian Saldate-Vasquez, 27, of Agua Prieta, Sonora, and found 44 packages of marijuana in the gas tank. The drugs weighed more than 43 pounds and were worth about $22,000.

All of the vehicles and the drugs were processed for seizure. The suspects were turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

About this blog

The Star's public safety reporters comb through police reports, and tell you what you've missed.

Police Beat updates

Featured businesses

View more...

Deals, offers & events

View more...