Salton City, California - El Centro Sector Border Patrol agents assigned to the Highway 86 immigration checkpoint arrested a woman suspected of smuggling methamphetamine inside a hidden compartment Sunday morning.

The incident occurred at approximately 8:15 a.m., when a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR), approached the checkpoint in a white Chevy Malibu.

During an immigration inspection, a Border Patrol canine detection team alerted to the windshield area near the front right fender of the vehicle.  Agents referred the vehicle to secondary inspection for further investigation.

In secondary, agents discovered 45 packages concealed inside a false compartment of the vehicle’s firewall.

The packages were examined and tested positive for the characteristics of methamphetamine. 

The combined weight of the packages totaled 47.95 lbs., with an estimated street value of $127,067.

“Smuggling narcotics is a serious crime,” said Chief Patrol Agent Gloria I. Chavez. “In addition to answering for this crime, we will pursue revocation of legal immigration status when appropriate.”

The details of the subject’s arrest was referred to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, to determine if revoking her privileged status is warranted.

The 52-year-old woman, a Mexican citizen, was turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration along with the vehicle and narcotics for further investigation.

In fiscal year 2018, El Centro Sector agents have seized more than 1,035.35 pounds of methamphetamine, amounting to over $2.4 million.