Man arrested for attempting to smuggle methamphetamine across border using drone

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — A 25-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of using a remote-controlled drone to transport several pounds of methamphetamine across the border from Mexico, U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials said.

A border patrol agent observed a drone flying over a border fence approximately two miles west of the San Ysidro Port of Entry at 11:25 p.m. on Aug. 8, CBP officials said Friday.

The agent notified other agents in the area to be on the lookout for the drone, and a different agent in an all-terrain vehicle spotted a male suspect about 15 minutes later near the intersection of Servano Avenue and Valentino Street, the CBP said. Upon approaching the man, the agent allegedly discovered him to be in possession of a large open bag with multiple plastic-wrapped
packages containing methamphetamine.

The man, who was not identified, was arrested by CBP agents, and the drone was found in a search of the immediate area, officials said.

Agents believe the drone was used to haul 12 packages of methamphetamine.

"Due to the agents’ heightened vigilance, this drone smuggling scheme was stopped before these dangerous narcotics could enter our communities,” Acting Assistant Chief Patrol Agent Boone Smith said.

Agents seized about 13 pounds of methamphetamine, with a street value of approximately $46,000.

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