Drugs hidden in a metal box inside one of the SUV’s backseat headrests. Courtesy CBP

U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported Friday the arrest of an American citizen attempting to smuggle $236,000 worth of fentanyl and cocaine hidden inside his SUV.

At approximately 5:15 p.m. on Wednesday, Border Patrol agents from the Interstate 15 checkpoint near Temecula stopped a suspicious 2009 Ford Escape. A drug-sniffing dog then alerted the agents to the presence of drugs.

Noticing that the SUV’s backseat headrests were unusually solid, agents found two metal boxes embedded in them. The boxes contained 22 pounds of fentanyl and 2.64 pounds of cocaine.

“This represents a significant seizure for San Diego Sector,” said Chief Patrol Agent Douglas Harrison. “This dangerous combination of drugs will not reach our local communities and we have stopped another citizen who is engaged in drug smuggling.”

The 54-year-old suspect was placed under arrest. The narcotics were turned over to the Drug Enforcement Administration and the vehicle was seized by the Border Patrol.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.