California CBP Officers Make 17 Marijuana Seizures, Confiscate Thousands of Dollars, Stop 243 Immigration Violators
San Diego - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at ports of entry along the California border with Mexico over the weekend made 17 marijuana seizures valued at $558,000, confiscated $46,434 on its way southbound into Mexico, and stopped 243 illegal aliens from entering the country.
The enforcement actions occurred from 6 a.m. on Friday through 6 a.m. on Monday.
The largest marijuana seizure occurred on Friday, December 11 at the Otay Mesa cargo facility when a 39-year-old Tijuana man driving a supposedly empty 1995 Freightliner Tractor entered the port for inspection. A CBP officer and his detector dog were screening conveyances and when the dog alerted to the tractor. The driver and tractor were sent for a more an in-depth examination.
Officers subsequently discovered compartments within both fuel tanks and extracted 10 wrapped packages of marijuana weighing 232 pounds. The driver was arrested and transported to San Diego County jail. CBP seized the vehicle and narcotics.
At the Andrade port of entry on Saturday, December 12, at about 9 a.m. a CBP officer encountered a 39-year-old male U.S. citizen driving a 1991 Toyota pick-up truck. During the course of the inspection, the officer noticed discrepancies with the driver's answers and referred him and the truck for further investigation.
An intensive inspection of the truck, which included a canine screening, led officers to the discovery of 73 wrapped packages of the narcotic concealed inside the bed of the pick-up truck.
The driver, a resident of Yuma, Ariz., was arrested for the alleged narcotic smuggling attempt and turned over to the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents for further processing. CBP seized both the vehicle and narcotics.
In five of this weekend's 17 marijuana seizures, officers discovered marijuana strapped to the bodies of individuals entering the country as pedestrians.
Officers with the San Ysidro port of entry conducting outbound inspections on the I-5 freeway made two currency seizures equaling $46,434.
The largest currency seizure occurred on Sunday afternoon at about 1:30 p.m. when the ports Anti-Terrorism Contraband Enforcement Team was conducting southbound inspections and stopped a 30-year-old U.S. citizen from Compton, Calif., driving a 2003 Suzuki motorcycle.
The man claimed he did not have any currency on him, but a subsequent search of his person and the motorcycle revealed $9,642 in his inside jacket pocket and left front pant pocket. An additional $20,000 was found on the Suzuki underneath the seat on top of the battery compartment.
He was arrested and transported to the Metropolitan Correctional Center by ICE agents. CBP seized the money and motorcycle.
On Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m., A-TCET officers also seized $16,792 in U.S. dollars and Mexican pesos from a 32-year-old Tijuana man driving a 2007 Gold Chevy Malibu on his way into Mexico on the I-5 freeway.
Officers at ports of entry in San Diego and the Imperial Valley also intercepted 243 violators of immigration law that included cases of illegal aliens hidden in vehicles, aliens who presented fraudulent documents and those who presented valid documents not legally issued to them.
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.