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California IN BRIEF : OTAY MESA : $106-Million Cocaine Haul at Truck Stop

From Times Staff and Wire Reports

U.S. Customs inspectors seized 2,907 pounds of cocaine worth $106 million inside a truck at the Otay Mesa cargo inspection stop, a spokeswoman said Saturday. Agents on Friday arrested the truck driver, Alfredo Angon Rivera, 37, of Los Angeles for investigation of smuggling a controlled substance, said Customs spokeswoman Bobbie Cassidy. The cocaine was hidden in a trailer load of scrap metal being imported from Mexico, Cassidy said. Inspectors discovered a metal box measuring six feet by three feet under piles of loose scrap. The box contained 32 cartons of cocaine, as well as three cartons with 230 pounds of marijuana, Cassidy said. If convicted, Rivera would face at least 10 years in prison and a possible $4-million fine, the spokeswoman said. Rudy M. Camacho, San Diego District director of the Customs Service, said the haul was the district’s second-largest ever. Inspectors at the same location seized 8,700 pounds of cocaine inside a propane gas tanker last October.


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