El Paso, Texas - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers working at El Paso area ports of entry made several marijuana seizures during the weekend. CBP officers confiscated an approximate weight of 1,176 pounds of marijuana.
"These seizures show the teamwork our CBP officers demonstrate each and every day from the officer who makes the initial referral to those who located and remove the contraband," said Bill Molaski, CBP El Paso port director. "Despite exceptionally heavy traffic over the weekend, CBP officers remained focused on their mission and were able to stop a sizeable drug load from entering the U.S."
In addition to the drug seizures, CBP officers recorded 44 immigration violations at area ports this weekend including 19 intended immigrants, six impostors and one alien smuggler. Intended immigrants will use a legally issued border-crossing card (laser visa) to live or work in the U.S., which is not authorized. They also lose their documents and are generally returned to Mexico. Impostors generally will use a legitimate entry document assigned to another person and present it as their own. Violators generally lose their documents, can be prosecuted and go to jail and/or are returned to Mexico. Alien smugglers are prosecuted and go to jail. CBP officers also recorded 18 cases of people making false claims to U.S. citizenship, people attempting to enter with counterfeit or altered documents, and stopping those who previously entered the country illegally. Most of these people will be prosecuted and go to jail.
CBP officers working at area ports took five people into custody who were being sought on outstanding warrants and lookouts to include a bench warrant, a violation of court order and a fugitive from justice.
CBP officers working at ports of entry in El Paso, West Texas and New Mexico made five seizures of agricultural items. Violators paid $1,000 in penalties in association with the violations. Prohibited food products seized included mangos, pork bologna, guavas and fresh eggs.
CBP 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; they screen 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. Their mission also includes carrying out traditional border-related responsibilities, including narcotics interdiction, enforcing immigration law, protecting the nation's food supply and agriculture industry from pests and diseases, and enforcing trade laws.
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.