TUCSON, Ariz. — Border Patrol agents seized an aircraft carrying half a million dollars worth of methamphetamine and fentanyl traveling across the southern border Thursday.
According to the U.S. Border Patrol, agents assigned to the Nogales and Tucson stations were able to seize the aircraft and contraband however the pilot managed to make an escape.
The ultralight, single-person aircraft was flying across the U.S.-Mexico border around 11 p.m. and tracked to a landing sight on a dirt road south of Tucson.
“An [Air and Marine Operations] helicopter crew and Border Patrol agents conducted an exhaustive search of the area, but did not find the presumed pilot,” CBP said in a statement.
Agents seized 143 pounds of meth and 220 grams of fentanyl valued at about $500,000. The drugs were reportedly packed in two containers, riding shotgun on the aircraft.
Border Patrol said flying drugs across the border is not the most common method of trafficking, but “transnational criminal organizations use a wide range of techniques to smuggle both humans and narcotics into the United States.”