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California authorities seize $360,000 of cocaine from car at U.S.-Mexico border

July 21, 2011 |  4:30 pm

California Department of Justice officials stopped a car at the U.S.-Mexico border crossing in Calexico and found 18 kilograms of cocaine, valued at $360,000, Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris said Thursday.

The car was stopped July 10. Justice Department agents were following up on information of drug trafficking along the border when they spotted a suspicious car coming into the United States from Mexicali, according to a statement from Harris’ office.

They followed the car and, with Imperial County sheriff’s deputies, stopped it for a vehicle code violation near the city of Brawley.

A police dog sniffed around the floorboard of the rear seat, where officers allegedly found a hidden compartment with the cocaine wrapped in red tape.

They arrested Heriberto Armenta Gamez of Mexicali on a charge of possession of cocaine with intent to sell, according to the statement.

-- Sam Quinones


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