Smugglers caught near Gaviota with pot and a panga boat

March 13, 2020

By CCT STAFF

Law enforcement officers swarmed a panga boat that beached in Santa Barbara County early Thursday morning and caught 20 suspected “transnational smugglers” with large amounts of marijuana and cannabis oil.

At about 3:30 a.m., the United States Coast Guard informed local and federal law enforcement agencies a panga boat was possibly heading toward the area of Gaviota Beach and Hollister Ranch. Investigators then located numerous suspects who were in the process of unloading a 50-foot panga that had been beached about a half mile north of Gaviota near Hollister Ranch, according to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office.

In addition to making 20 arrests, authorities seized numerous plastic burlap-style bags that contained a total of 5,300 pounds of dried marijuana. Officers also seized more than 40 gallons of marijuana crude oil.

Homeland Security agents took custody of the suspects and transported them to a federal detention facility.

The Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Cannabis Compliance Team, narcotics detectives, K-9 units, the Santa Barbara County Air Support Unit, Ventura County Sheriff’s deputies, CHP officers and California State Parks personnel also took part in the raid on the panga boat.

 


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mazin

I know exactly where this is. What I call my secret beach. :(


analyticone

Dang! They foiled Hill’s getaway plan.


mazin

NOT funny!


jbt

Cutting in on the State’s revenue stream…can’t have that!


mazin

These dudes killed an officer.


modernwelding

Yeah on Santa Cruz Island as I recall.