The US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) said that drones were becoming a popular method of drug transportation in the past year, and that some gangs have even begun to manufacture their own drones. Apparently, drug cartels have been hiring engineers so as to construct the device to carry a much heavier weight than drones that are commercially available. The DEA approximated that drones were making more than 150 trips a year.
Just this week in San Ysidro, Mexico, a quadcopter carrying over 6 pounds (3kg) or methamphetamines crashed in a supermarket parking. The Tijuana police believe that the drone could not support the weight, which lead to its crash. The drugs had been divided into 6 packets and taped along the outside of the drone. Police went to investigate after receiving an anonymous phone call, and expect that they will be able to trace who put it in the air, and where it took off. The drone is a prototype that can operate autonomously, once given GPS coordinates, it requires no pilot to guide it.
It is becoming common to use drones as a means of ferrying illegal items across the US-Mexican border.
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