Travelers make their way toward the border walkway in the San Ysidro Port of Entry. / Photo by Adriana Heldiz

The U.S. attorney’s office in San Diego charged 38-year-old Fernando Jesus Peraza with importing more than 20,000 fentanyl pills. Peraza, a U.S. citizen living in Tijuana, was arrested Thursday after officers at the San Ysidro Port of Entry found four packages of pills concealed in the passenger side rear quarter panel of his vehicle.

The pills tested positive for fentanyl but were designed to look like oxycodone. It appears to be the largest fentanyl seizure in pill-form ever made along the U.S.-Mexico border.

This seizure came roughly a week after a 19-year old U.S. citizen living in Tijuana was caught trying to smuggle 11,490 fentanyl pills (also made to look like oxycodone), 61 pounds of methamphetamine and 14 pounds of heroin inside a vehicle.

  • A 20-year old Tijuana college student was sentenced to 87 months in custody for smuggling approximately 77 pounds of fentanyl. The seizure, made in December 2017 at the San Ysidro Port of Entry, was also one of the largest seizures of the deadly opioid along the Southwest border at the time, according to the U.S. attorney’s office.

This post originally appeared in the Aug. 13 Border Report.

Maya was Voice of San Diego’s Associate Editor of Civic Education. She reported on marginalized communities in San Diego and oversees Voice’s explanatory...

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