Busy border weekend sees drug bust, car chase, sex offender arrest

SAN DIEGO — An eventful weekend at the U.S.-Mexico border saw Border Patrol agents seize more than eight pounds of heroin, arrest a convicted sex offender and catch three other people accused of running from officials.

Friday around noon, agents at a checkpoint on Interstate 8 near Pine Valley sent a suspicious vehicle in for a secondary inspection. A drug dog led agents to four packages of heroin tucked inside a fake battery compartment under the hood, Border Patrol said. The packages weighed a little over eight-and-a-half pounds, with an estimated street value of $89,700.

The driver, a 23-year-old U.S. citizen, was arrested. The drugs and car were seized by Border Patrol.

Saturday evening around 9 p.m., agents say they spotted a person jumping into the back seat of a car and speeding off about a mile north of the border. The car was driving so fast that agents fell back for safety concerns, Border Patrol said, but Customs and Border Protection officers were able to stop the vehicle before it entered Mexico.

The Nissan Pathfinder had three people inside: A U.S. citizen, a Mexican citizen and a Honduran citizen, officials said. All three were arrested.

The next morning, agents were told four men were hiding in brush near the Tecate Port of Entry around 7:30 a.m. Agents confronted the group and learned they were in the country illegally, Border Patrol said. When the four were taken to a Border Patrol station for processing, records revealed one of the men had a history of sexual assault.

The man, who had served 12 years in prison, had several rape convictions carrying a combined 21 years in prison and is now being held for further legal action, Border Patrol said.

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