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Buffalo Border Crossing CBP Officers Seize more than 17 Pounds of Marijuana

Release Date: 
August 11, 2010

Lewiston, N.Y. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Field Operations announced the seizure of more than 17 pounds of marijuana and the arrest two Canadian citizens in the smuggling attempt.

Bags of marijuana concealed in front fender area of vehicle.

Sixty-four vacuum-sealed bags of marijuana were concealed in the rear doors, hatch and front fender area of the vehicle driven by a Canadian citizen attempting to enter the U.S. The bags had a total weight of approximately 17.9 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of close to $54,000.

On Aug. 14, CBP officers encountered Eric Li and Derek Lee, both 32-year-old Canadian Citizens from Markham and Thornhill, Ontario respectively, as they applied for admission into the United States at the Lewiston-Queenston Bridge border crossing in Lewiston, N.Y. The two advised the primary CBP officer that they were en route to Boston, Mass. to visit friends and shop. Additional questioning raised the suspicion of the CBP officer and both were referred for a secondary enforcement exam.

During the course of the secondary inspection, CBP officers discovered what appeared to be modifications made to the vehicle. A physical inspection yielded 64 vacuum-sealed bags of marijuana secreted in the rear doors, hatch and front fender area. The bags had a total weight of approximately 17.9 pounds of marijuana with an estimated street value of close to $54,000.

Both Li and Lee were arrested on federal charges of importation and possession with the intent to distribute a controlled substance. They were turned over to agents from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for further investigation and prosecution by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of New York.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security responsible for the management, control, and protection of our Nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017