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CBP Intercepts Tamales with Cocaine Filling

Release Date: 
August 22, 2014

HOUSTON — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport foiled a traveler’s attempt to smuggle nearly 7 ounces of cocaine packed inside tamales.

CBP officers discovered cocaine-filled tamales

CBP officers foiled a traveler’s attempt to smuggle nearly 7 ounces of cocaine packed inside tamales.

A 46-year-old El Salvadoran man was travelling to New York, August 20, when CBP officers selected him for additional screening. During an examination of his luggage, officers discovered a box containing 200 tamales, which were not disclosed on the traveler’s declaration.

Upon closer examination, officers found nine separate bags containing a white substance stuffed within some of the tamales.  The substance tested positive for cocaine.

“This type of seizure speaks to our level of commitment in disrupting criminal activity despite the concealment method,” said CBP Service Port Director Beverly Good.

The cocaine was seized and the traveler was turned over to the Houston Police Department.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017