Deputies: Another Panga Boat Used to Smuggle Drugs Found Washed Ashore

SAN SIMEON, Calif. - Another drug smuggling boat was found full of marijuana just north of San Simeon. However, when deputies arrived on the scene, no drug smugglers were anywhere to be found.

It was just after 5 o'clock Monday evening when deputies received the call from a witness that had seen the panga boat full of drugs.

"A State Parks ranger was the first on scene, and he located a possible boat on the beach. We responded with quite a few units," said Deputy Ian Parkinson, with the San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office.

When the deputies found the boat, the drugs were all over the beach. Deputies believe the smugglers were interrupted.

"It doesn't look like the pick-up crew arrived or was able to make connection, so we recovered all the marijuana that was on board the boat," said Parkinson.

Deputies estimate the load to be about 3,000 pounds of pot.

"Typically what we've seen is two or three people on a boat, and from what we gather from the witness, at this point, it appears to be consistent with that," said Parkinson.

All that was left in the boat was gas cans, rope, gloves, and trash, said deputies.

In this case, deputies will take the boat to Morro Bay.

"Most of them we take custody of, we take them for a period of 90 days and then we destroy the boats," said Parkinson.

So far, there have been more than 16,000 pounds of marijuana has been seized from panga boats up and down the Central Coast.

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