HIDALGO, Texas—U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Office of Field Operations (OFO) at the Hidalgo and Pharr International Bridges seized $1,313,901 worth of alleged marijuana and cocaine on Tuesday, Dec. 19 in two separate, unrelated incidents.
“These are remarkable interceptions by our CBP officers in the cargo and passenger environments,” said Acting Port Director Carlos Rodriguez, Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry. “They continue to make significant narcotic seizures by combining their experience with the use of technology and other available tools to accomplish the CBP mission.”
The first seizure occurred at the Hidalgo International Bridge after CBP officers discovered narcotics concealed within a maroon 1993 Mercedes Benz commercial bus. The driver of the conveyance was traveling from Linares, Nuevo Leon, Mexico en route to Houston, Texas. During the secondary inspection of the bus, CBP officers utilized a non-intrusive imaging (NII) x-ray system along with the aid of a canine team to locate the narcotics. CBP officers discovered a total of 41 packages which contained 109 pounds of alleged cocaine valued at approximately $843,880.
Later that same day, CBP officers assigned to the Pharr International Bridge cargo facility encountered a 1996 utility tractor trailer hauling a shipment of vegetables. After the conveyance was referred for a secondary inspection, CBP officers utilized a non-intrusive imaging (NII) x-ray system along with the help of a canine team to locate the narcotics. CBP officers extracted 197 packages which contained 2,350 pounds of alleged marijuana comingled within a shipment of vegetables. The alleged narcotics carry an estimated street value of $470,021.
CBP OFO seized the bus and the drugs. The cases remain under investigation by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents.
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.