CBP Officers Find Cocaine Strapped to Bodies of Two Smugglers
El Paso, Texas - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the El Paso port of entry made two cocaine seizures with a combine weight of 13.31 pounds Friday evening. The drugs were strapped to the bodies of two females. In addition to the cocaine busts, CBP officers working at El Paso area ports of entry confiscated just over 100 pounds of marijuana over the weekend.
"This particular narcotic load was unique in itself where the drug was not concealed within the vehicle but strapped on the occupants," said William "Bill" Molaski, CBP port director in El Paso. "This was a great enforcement action by our frontline CBP officers."
The Friday cocaine seizures were made in the vehicular inspection area of the Paso Del Norte Bridge at 11:20 p.m. A CBP officer at the primary inspection booth noticed inconsistencies in the statements from both the driver and front passenger of a 2003 Ford Windstar.
The driver, passenger and vehicle were escorted to a secondary inspection area for an intensive inspection. CBP officers discovered a total of five bundles strapped around the abdomen areas of both the driver (three bundles) and passenger (two bundles) concealed underneath their clothing. The contents of the bundles tested positive for cocaine.
CBP officers arrested the driver, a 19-year-old female U.S. citizen from Oklahoma City, and the passenger, a 36-year-old U.S. resident alien from Canutillo, Texas. Both were turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agents to face federal charges including importation of a controlled substance and possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, and were booked into the El Paso County jail where they are currently detained.
In addition to the drug seizures, CBP officers recorded 63 immigration violations at area ports this weekend, including 45 intended immigrants and 18 imposters. Intended immigrants will use a legally issued border-crossing card, or 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. Imposters 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.
CBP officers working at area ports made a total of 18 fugitive apprehensions.
In addition to the drug busts, CBP officers working at ports of entry in El Paso, West Texas and New Mexico made 13 seizures of agricultural items. Violators paid $1,925.00 in penalties in association with the violations. Prohibited food products seized included avocados, grapefruits, oranges, peaches, live plants with roots, pork chorizo and pork meat.
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 official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. 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.