SAN DIEGO—U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at ports of entry along the California/Mexico border over the weekend seized almost 7,000 pounds of narcotics valued at about $7.8 million and apprehended a 18 fugitives, including a man wanted for homicide.
CBP officers at the six land ports of entry intercepted 15 smuggling attempts involving marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin. The drugs were hidden in various areas of the vehicles such as in the gas tank, in the back rest, quarter panels and the dashboard.
Two enforcement actions are highlighted below:
The largest seizure occurred on Friday, Aug. 2, at about 9:15 p.m., when officers at the Otay Mesa cargo facility encountered a 20-year-old male driving a 2000 Freightliner tractor-trailer with a shipment of acrylic displays. A CBP officer referred the tractor and trailer to the dock area for further examination.
While conducting an intensive inspection of the conveyance, CBP officers utilized the port's imaging system and detected anomalies within the pallets of merchandise. A canine team screened the conveyance the detector dog alerted to the pallets, leading officers to the discovery of 262 wrapped packages of marijuana hidden inside cardboard boxes.
A total of 6,506 pounds of marijuana was offloaded, valued at almost $3 million.
The driver, a Mexican citizen and resident of Tijuana, Baja California, was arrested and booked into the Metropolitan Correctional Center.
CBP seized the vehicle and marijuana.
On Sunday, Aug. 4, CBP officers working at the San Ysidro port of entry detained a man wanted for homicide by the Fresno County Sheriff's Office, with bail set at $2 million.
Nicolas Andres Alcala, a 20-year old U.S. citizen who resides in San Diego entered the port as a pedestrian. A CBP officer checked Alcala's name against law enforcement databases, and was alerted to the homicide warrant.
Alcala was booked into the San Diego County Jail to await extradition.
CBP officers also captured 17 other individuals wanted on outstanding felony warrants for such crimes as larceny, burglary, dangerous drugs, and parole violations.
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.