El PASO, Texas -- U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operation officers working at El Paso area ports of entry made seven marijuana seizures this weekend. They seized 508 pounds of marijuana. The estimated street value of the seized contraband is $406,400.
“CBP officers are hard at work supporting our primary homeland security mission,” said Hector Mancha, CBP El Paso Port Director. “The inspections we conduct often identify other violations and this drug seizure activity is a good example of the vigilance demonstrated by CBP.”
One of the larger seizures of the weekend occurred Friday just before 4 p.m. at the downtown Paso Del Norte international crossing in El Paso. CBP officers and Border Patrol agents were performing an enforcement operation in the queue of vehicles waiting to enter the U.S. when the encountered a 2001 Dodge Stratus occupied by a woman and her two minor children. A Border Patrol agent initiated a conversation with the female and noted that she seemed nervous. CBP drug sniffing dog “Cesar” then alerted to the door of the vehicle. CBP officers continued their exam and located hidden bundles of marijuana in multiple locations to include the doors, seats, tires, and bumper of the car. They recovered a total of 87 marijuana filled bundles weighing 94.7 pounds.
CBP officers took custody of the driver, 21-year-old Haydee Maynez of El Paso, Texas. She was turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agents to face charges associated with the failed smuggling attempt. Her two children were turned over to a relative.
While anti-terrorism is the primary mission of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the inspection process at the ports of entry associated with this mission results in impressive numbers of enforcement actions in all categories.