Agents under fire before busting over 1,000 pounds of pot

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Bust nets $1 million in drugs

The following news release was sent by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection:

DOUGLAS - Border Patrol Agents from the Tucson Sector and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents came under fire from drug smugglers during a drug bust of more than 1,100 lbs of marijuana near Douglas, Arizona, yesterday.

Monday at 10:30 p.m., agents observed two large trucks, a Chevrolet Avalanche and a Ford F150 using ramps to cross over the border fence.While using a remote camera surveillance system, camera operators were able to coordinate field agents to intercept the trucks.As agents got close, the trucks turned south and attempted to flee back to the border.Agents were able to deploy a tire deflation device and successfully deflated the tires of both trucks stopping them just north of the international boundary fence.

A third vehicle was spotted south of the border fence where a subject was observed firing an automatic rifle in the direction of the agents. Several additional subjects with weapons were seen climbing over the fence and they began unloading marijuana from the Chevy Avalanche.The individuals were seen throwing numerous bundles marijuana back into Mexico.As agents formed a security perimeter around the Ford F150, the smugglers set fire to the Avalanche and absconded back into Mexico.Agents were able to secure the Ford F150 and inside the vehicle they discovered 1,158 lbs of marijuana with an estimated street value of 1 million dollars.

Registration checks were run on the Ford F150 and agents discovered the vehicle was reported stolen out of Douglas, Ariz.Mexican Law Enforcement was contacted but at this time no arrests have been made.

As an all threats agency, the U.S. Border Patrol's capability to immediately respond and deal with any type of threat to our Nation's borders is a major priority.The combination of personnel, infrastructure, and technology proves effective tools at the ready.

Tucson Sector Agents seized more marijuana than any other sector during Fiscal Year 2008 accounting for 812,142 lbs. of marijuana worth an estimated 649 million dollars. Agents seized 46,766 lbs. of marijuana for the month of October, the first month in Fiscal Year 2009.