California CBP Officers Seize $5.2 Million of Narcotics, Half a Million Dollars Over Weekend
San Diego, Calif. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at ports of entry along the California-Mexico border, over the weekend, seized approximately 1,111 pounds of narcotics valued at almost $5.2 million and intercepted $447,150 in unreported U.S. currency.
CBP officers at the six land ports of entry intercepted 19 smuggling attempts involving marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin. The drugs were hidden in various areas of the vehicles such as gas tanks, bumpers, quarter panels and tires.
On Saturday, at the Otay Mesa passenger port of entry, CBP officers encountered a 20-year-old male citizen of Mexico driving a 2012 Nissan Tiida as he waited in line for inspection. CBP officers roving the area targeted the vehicle and upon their inspection, noticed anomalies with the floor of the vehicle.
Officers searched the vehicle and found a non-factory floor compartment on both the driver and passenger side where they extracted 68 packages of methamphetamine, weighing 78 pounds with a street value of $1.6 million.
On Sunday, at the Andrade Port of Entry in Winterhaven, a CBP officer referred a 19-year-old female U.S. citizen driver of a 2004 Ford Taurus, for an in-depth inspection.
During the inspection, CBP officers utilized a detector dog who alerted to the back seat of the vehicle. Officers searched the area and discovered 20 wrapped packages of methamphetamine hidden in a non-factory compartment in the rear seat. The methamphetamine weighed 21 pounds with a street value of more than $321,000.
In both incidents, the drivers were transported to local jail facilities where they await arraignment.
CBP seized the narcotics and vehicles.
On Friday, at about 1:30 p.m., CBP officers performing inspections at the San Ysidro Port of Entry along Interstate 5 southbound stopped a 2010 Nissan Altima bound for Mexico.
CBP officers used a currency detector dog to screen the vehicle and the K-9 alerted to the inside of the car.
CBP officers ran the vehicle through the port's imaging system, revealing anomalies within the gas tank. Officers removed 19 packages of unreported U.S. currency from the vehicle's gas tank, totaling $447,150. CBP seized the money.
The driver, a 33-year-old male citizen of Mexico and lawful permanent resident of the United States, was arrested.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations is responsible for securing our borders at the ports of entry. U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers' primary mission is anti-terrorism; screening all people, vehicles, and goods entering the United States, while facilitating the flow of legitimate trade and travel into and out of the United States. Our mission also includes carrying out traditional border-related responsibilities, including narcotics interdiction, enforcing immigration and trade laws, protecting our nation's food supply and agriculture industry from pests and diseases.
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.