Authorities: 18 people rescued in Ariz. desert

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By Andrew Michalscheck By Andrew Michalscheck

GILA BEND, Ariz. (AP) -- Authorities say 18 people linked to drug smuggling have been rescued from the desert new Gila Bend.

Maricopa County sheriff's deputies and Customs and Border Patrol rescued the people late Friday after a man called 911 for help.

The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office says the man told authorities in Spanish that his group was trying to smuggling in 700 pounds of marijuana and had gotten lost. He told authorities the group had been in the hot desert for five days and without water for three.

Deputies located five people and Border Patrol agents found another 13. The conditions of those found are not known.

The alleged abandoned marijuana has not been located.