Southern California -- this just in

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4 tons of pot found in the ocean off Dana Point

May 20, 2012 | 11:13 pm

Local and federal authorities spent several hours Sunday recovering more than 160 bales of marijuana found floating in the Pacific Ocean off Orange County.

A flotilla of official boats eventually hauled in more than 8,000 pounds of the drug and unloaded it at Dana Point Harbor, according to Lt. Joe Balicki of the Orange County Sheriff's Department.

The first call reporting the bales came about noon, Balicki said, and the Sheriff's Department sent out three boats, including two of the agency's fire boats. The U.S. Coast Guard and the Border Patrol were also involved, he said.

The bales were found bobbing in the water about 13 miles from shore, Balicki said, with no vessel nearby. The operation continued well into Sunday evening.

-- Julie Cart