Two drug smugglers were caught within minutes of each other Wednesday at the San Clemente Border Patrol Checkpoint, each transporting different drugs of choice, authorities said today.
Together, the confiscated drugs had a street value of more than $600,000, according to the U.S. Border Patrol.
The first incident occurred at about 9:30 a.m. San Clemente agents and referred a 23-year-old U.S. citizen for a secondary inspection, who said he was on his way to Long Beach airport to pick up a friend, a press release states.
The man gave received permission to search his Ford Fusion, and agents noticed the smell of marijuana when they opened the trunk, officials said. The trunk was filled with suitcases and the man admitted they contained marijuana.
Agents opened the suitcases and found 63 bundles, weighing 213.85 pounds with an estimated value of $128,310, according to the release.
Agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration took custody of the suspect and marijuana.
Minutes later, agents stopped a 20-year-old U.S. driver in a 2000 Honda Civic near the checkpoint. A K-9 detected drugs, officials said.
The driver and vehicle were taken to the San Clemente Station for further inspection, and a more detailed search revealed 17 bundles of cocaine hidden inside a speaker box in the trunk.
The cocaine bundles weighed 40.90 pounds and have an estimated street value of $531,700, according to the release.
Agents from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations took custody of the man and narcotics.