WELLTON, AZ - U.S. Border Patrol agents arrested 12 suspected smugglers and confiscated 801 pounds of marijuana in separate incidents the last two days.
Agents from the Wellton Station arrested four people southwest of Gila Bend who were carrying 512 pounds of marijuana Wednesday.
They arrested eight others backpacking Thursday with 289 pounds of marijuana near the Paloma Farm exit on Interstate 8, according to Border Patrol Agent K. Linwood Estes.
The seized marijuana has an estimated worth of more than $400,000, Estes said.
The suspects illegally entered the U.S. through a common smuggling route through the Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument and the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge in southern Arizona, according to Estes.
The suspects and seized narcotics were turned over to the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office.