Digital Version of July/August 2015
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Border Patrol seizes drugs dropped by ultra-light aircraft
In near-midnight darkness on March 7, drug smugglers swooped across the California/Mexico border in an ultra-light aircraft to drop well over $100,000 worth of marijuana into the U.S.
The drop, near Calipatria, CA., however, was intercepted by Border Patrol agents assigned to the Indio station, according to the Border Patrol. Agents seized the 230 pounds of drugs dropped by aircraft.
Border Patrol said its agents were notified at about 11 p.m. by the CBP Air and Marine Operations Center of a possible ultra-light traveling north from the U. S./Mexico border fence, five miles west of Calexico. Agents responded to the last known location given by air and marine operators. While conducting surveillance of the area, agents saw a black GMC Sierra truck with packages inside the cab and a metal cage in the bed of the truck -- a sign that the truck was involved with the operation, as metal cages are frequently used for dropping narcotics from ultra-light aircrafts, said the Border Patrol. Agents conducted a vehicle stop and discovered 10 packages of marijuana, weighing over 230 pounds, with an estimated value of over $184,000, it said.
One individual, the vehicle, and the marijuana were seized and turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration, said the Border Patrol.