LOS ANGELES — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Field Operation officers from Los Angeles International Airport stationed at an Ontario air cargo facility discovered crystal methamphetamine concealed within a false cavity of a hollowed out candle on Aug. 3. The estimated value of the seized 1.6 pounds of crystal meth is $23,000.
CBP officers examined an express parcel from Mexico destined to Mills Spring, North Carolina. It contained a large religious candle that was unusually heavy and a boy’s cotton suit.
X-ray images revealed a false cavity concealing a large object within the candle. The bottom of the candle was carefully carved out, revealing a dark-blue cylinder shaped object. With a small incision, officers extracted a white-crystal substance that tested positive for crystal methamphetamine.
“Our officers are very mindful of an individual’s property including spiritual items, yet they remain focused on keeping dangerous drugs off the streets of our community,” said Mitchell Merriam, CBP Los Angeles Area Port Director.
The two items were seized by CBP and turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Homeland Security Investigations special agents for further investigation.
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.