Funds requested to fight drug pangas off Calif.

by The Associated Press
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SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (AP) — The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff’s Office wants money to fight drug-smuggling pangas that have washed ashore the central coast in recent years.

Sheriff Ian Parkinson plans to ask county supervisors Tuesday to spend nearly $500,000 in federal grants to buy a response boat and other equipment.

The San Luis Obispo Tribune reports the response boat would be used to take confiscated panga boats to Morro Bay for disposal.

A dozen panga boats have landed along the central coast the past two years along with 10,000 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of $8.8 million.

Sheriff’s deputies currently don’t have a quick way to remove the vessels from the beach. The department also wants license plate readers, night-vision goggles and a thermal imaging camera.

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Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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