Crime

MCSO Busts Border Patrol Agent With Oxycodone and Fake Weed

The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office's Human Smuggling Unit arrested a U.S. Border Patrol agent last night as he was allegedly speeding down State Route 85 in possession of oxycodone and fake marijuana.

According to the MCSO, the HSU was patrolling a known drug-smuggling route when they bumped into Michel Atondo, who was seen doing 90 mph in a 65-mph zone.

Deputies stopped Atondo, who told them he was a Border Patrol agent returning to work after visiting some friends in Glendale.

That was kinda true.

MCSO deputies checked out Atondo's story with the Border Patrol. Turns out, he actually is an agent, but has been on "indefinite suspension" since April because of an ongoing Drug Enforcement Agency drug-smuggling case.

Atondo, apparently, was found in possession of 745 pounds of weed earlier this year.

When deputies searched his car, they found oxycodone and so-called "synthetic marijuana."

MCSO spokesman Justin Griffin tells New Times the amount of drugs found in Atondo's possession last night indicates that it was for personal use, and not meant for sale.

According to Sheriff Joe Arpaio, the investigation into Atondo's wild ride isn't over.

"Deputies also seized sensitive documents concerning Border Patrol activity in Southwest Arizona," Arpaio says. "My office will continue to work closely with the U.S. Border Patrol and other federal agencies on this matter."

Atondo was booked into the Fourth Avenue Jail on one count each of criminal speeding and possession of narcotic drugs.

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James King
Contact: James King