By Danielle Grobmeier The Arizona Republic-12 News Breaking News Team
Mon Mar 4, 2013 10:19 AM

During three vehicle pursuits, Pinal County Sheriff’s Office deputies took into custody more than a dozen people suspected of being in the country illegally. One of the pursuits involved more than 750 pounds of marijuana.

On Feb. 25, a Pinal County deputy tried to stop a vehicle that was speeding eastbound on Highway 84 near Russel Road, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The car turned around and headed west, at which point the driver’s side rear tire came off, officials said. The vehicle pulled into a muddy farm field where it got stuck, and the two men inside the vehicle fled on foot, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies caught the driver, identified as Dimas Daniel Orundo-Lopez, 40, and the passenger, identified as Claudio Santiago Orduno-Canez, 27. The men told authorities they were in the U.S. illegally, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Deputies also found 35 bundles of marijuana weighing more than 750 pounds in the car. The marijuana was valued at $569,250.

On Feb. 26, a Pinal County sheriff’s deputy tried to stop a truck after seeing it make several traffic violations near Alsdorf Road and Eleven Mile Corner in Eloy, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The driver turned several times before turning off into a desert field. The driver lost control of the vehicle as he tried to avoid hitting a concrete canal, authorities said.

The driver and nine others fled the truck, and U.S. Border Patrol and a PCSO air unit were able to locate seven of the individuals, who were not identified.

On Feb. 28, another pursuit near Stanfield and Peters roads resulted in the vehicle turning into the desert and several individuals fleeing the vehicle. All of the individuals in this incident were located and turned over to U.S. Border Patrol, though it is unclear how many of them were involved. The individuals were not identified.