Calexico, Calif. - U. S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the Calexico West Port of Entry prevented more than 85 pounds of cocaine with an estimated value of more than $853,000 from entering the United States in two separate occasions Wednesday.
At approximately 2:50 p.m., a 28-year-old female Mexican citizen, driving a black 2006 Toyota Corolla, applied for admission into the U.S. The CBP officer referred the car and driver for a more intensive inspection after a narcotic detector dog alerted to the interior of the vehicle. CBP officers found a total of 15 packages containing cocaine concealed in all four doors, inside the spare tire, and inside the air intake compartment under the hood of the vehicle. The cocaine weighed almost 34 pounds, with an estimated street value of $305,600.
At approximately 7:25 p.m., CBP officers referred a 31-year-old male U.S. citizen from Bishop, Calif., driving a blue 2001 Ford Expedition for further inspection. After a narcotic detector dog alerted to the gas tank area of the vehicle, CBP officers removed the gas tank and discovered a non-factory compartment containing 20 packages of cocaine. The cocaine weighed almost 52 pounds, with an estimated street value of $468,000.
"The hard work of these CBP officers pays off day after day," said Calexico Port Director Billy Whitford. "Significant seizures such as these are the direct result of their dedication and commitment to stopping the flow of dangerous narcotics from entering the U.S."
In both incidents the narcotics and vehicles were seized by CBP and the drivers were arrested and turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement for prosecution.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with 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.