20 AUGUST 2017 • 3:35 AM
Drone used to deliver narcotics into the US CREDIT: NATI HARNIK/AP
By David Milward, US CORRESPONDENT
A man has been charged with using a drone to smuggle more than 13 pounds of methamphetamine into the US from Mexico.
Jorge Edwin Rivera, 25, told the US authorities that he was paid to deliver the drugs to an accomplice at a filling station in San Diego.
Rivera, who is a US citizen, admitted smuggling the drugs five or six times since March.
Border agents spotted the flying drone on August 8 and tracked it back to Rivera who was about 2,000 yards from the border.
He was found with the methamphetamine in a lunchbox and a drone was hidden in a nearby bush.
Drones have not normally been the mode of choice for smuggling narcotics into the America, according to the US Drug Enforcement Administration.
This is because they are only capable of carrying small amounts and are regarded as less cost-effective than using boats or hidden vehicle compartments.
In 2015 two people admitted using a drone to deliver 28 pounds of heroin to Calexico, a border town in California.
Border agents in Arizona spotted a drone being used to drop 30-pound bundles of marijuana in the same year.
Rivera has been remanded in custody and his next hearing is scheduled for September 7. – The Telegraph