Panga landing at Montana de Oro leads to 14 arrests
May 30, 2013
Just after midnight Wednesday, deputies spotted suspicious vehicles traveling into Montan de Oro, where they dropped off some people. The Sheriff’s Special Operations Unit helped the deputies place the vehicles under surveillance at the location of the drop off.
Around 6:30 a.m., investigators noticed people getting into the vehicles and loading packages. After the vehicles took off, the investigators stopped them on Los Osos Valley Road and found what they believed to be a large quantity of marijuana.
The deputies arrested 14 people and booked them in San Luis Obispo County Jail on charges including transporting marijuana for sale and possession of marijuana for sale and conspiracy. The majority of those arrested are Mexican nationals.
Officials later discovered an approximately 35-foot panga boat on a secluded beach at Montana de Oro. The beached boat marked the fifth time a panga landed in San Luis Obispo County in the past year.
Approximately six months ago, the Sheriff’s Office received a federal grant for deploying coastal patrols in search of panga boats smuggling drugs.
The Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the California Highway Patrol and state parks rangers are assisting the Sheriff’s Office in the case.