Chinese national found hidden in vehicle at Otay Mesa Port of Entry

$3.7M in drugs seized, 17 fugitives captured

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - More than $3.7 million in drugs was seized, 17 fugitives were captured and a Chinese national was found hidden in a vehicle at the U.S.-Mexico border last weekend.

Customs and Border Protection officials said the drug seizures and arrests were made at the Otay Mesa Port of Entry from July 7-9.

According to CBP officials, officers seized more than 200 pounds of methamphetamine, 193 pounds of cocaine, 462 pounds of marijuana, almost three pounds of heroin and 393 ecstasy tablets during the weekend. Officials said the drugs were found hidden inside vehicle floors, gas tanks, rocker panels and truck beds.

CBP officials said the 17 fugitives arrested were wanted on a variety of charges, including rape, stalking, escape and larceny.

Notable incidents:

On July 7, at about 11 a.m., a 71-year-old Mexican citizen driving a Ford pickup truck was stopped for an inspection. Officers discovered "a non-factory compartment" in the bed of his truck, and officers pulled 17 packages of cocaine and 69 packages of meth -- with an estimated street value of $955,000 -- from the compartment.

Later that same day, a 32-year-old U.S. citizen's Mercedes-Benz was being inspected when officers searched the trunk and found 393 ecstasy pills -- valued at $7,800 -- hidden in a hat.

On July 8, a canine team inspecting a Plymouth Voyager alerted officers to the vehicle's undercarriage. Officers found a hidden compartment with a Chinese national inside. The Chinese national was placed on an immigration hold, CBP officials said.

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