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Lifeguards Discover Boat Containing Bale of Marijuana Off Monterey Coast

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Marijuana leaves (AP Graphic)

(AP)

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MONTEREY (CBS SF)— A suspected drug-running boat was found abandoned along the Monterey County coast on Saturday, after potentially unloading hundreds of bales of illegal marijuana just south of Carmel Highlands, sheriff’s deputies said.

At around 9:30 a.m., lifeguards on foot patrol at Garrapata State Park located a beached Panga boat, a 36-foot speedboat equipped with two 200-horsepower engines, according to the Monterey County Sheriff’s Office.

The boat contained several 55-gallon drums of gasoline and articles of loose clothing, the sheriff’s office said.

A bale of marijuana weighing around 36 pounds was discovered under a nearby tree, according to deputies.

Most law enforcement agencies estimate the street value of a pound of marijuana to be between $2,000 and $4,000, giving the bale of pot an estimated value of more than $140,000.

Officers from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection responded to the scene, and estimated that several hundred bales of marijuana were likely unloaded from the boat throughout the previous night, according to the sheriff’s office.

The drug investigation has been taken over by the U.S. border patrol agency, the sheriff’s office said.

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