U.S. Border Patrol agents apprehended a man attempting to smuggle liquid meth in five-gallon water bottles. Photo courtesy of U.S. Border Patrol.

A Mexican national was arrested at a U.S. Border Patrol freeway checkpoint in northern San Diego County after officers allegedly found 15 gallons of liquid methamphetamine inside his SUV, the federal agency reported today.

The 45-year-old man, whose name was withheld, pulled into the San Onofre-area Interstate 5 checkpoint in a 2003 Lincoln Navigator about 7 p.m. Tuesday and presented agents with a work visa, according to USBP public affairs.

The personnel directed the vehicle to a secondary inspection area so they could check for documentation that would allow the driver to travel more than 25 miles from the international border.

After a service dog alerted them to contraband in the SUV, the officers found three water cooler-style plastic bottles full of methamphetamine in solution form. The illicit substance would have been worth an estimated $610,000 in street sales, authorities said.

The suspect was arrested and turned over to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. The Border Patrol seized the vehicle.

— City News Service

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