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Border agents in Arizona drop from copter, snag suspects, 430 pounds of pot

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PHOENIX — Border Patrol agents dropped from a helicopter to arrest nine smuggling suspects and seize almost 430 pounds of marijuana near Tucson this week.

Customs and Border Protection reported Tuesday that Air and Marine Operations and Tucson Sector agents caught a group of men carrying large backpacks in the rough terrain around Three Points, about 25 miles south of Tucson.

Agents in an UH-60 helicopter slid down a rope, hit the ground, then collected the drugs and suspects.

The suspects were turned over for likely prosecution of narcotics and immigration violations.

The 429-pound plus marijuana haul was worth an estimated $215,000.

“I am proud of the work our crews did,” Tucson Air Branch Director Mitch Pribble said in a press release.

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