HIDALGO, Texas — U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations (OFO) at the Hidalgo International Bridge seized $390,000 worth of alleged cocaine in two separate, unrelated incidents and arrested two Mexican citizens in connection with the failed smuggling attempts.
“Our frontline officers demonstrated outstanding inspection techniques and great observational awareness as evidenced by these two interceptions of hard narcotics,” said Acting Port Director Javier Cantu, Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry. “Being able to detect discrepancies with vehicles and travelers enables our officers to detect contraband at our international border crossings.”
On June 11, CBP officers working at the Hidalgo-Reynosa International Bridge encountered a white 2000 Isuzu Rodeo driven by a 24-year-old male Mexican citizen from Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico. After presenting his Mexican border crossing card, an officer referred him and the vehicle for a secondary examination and it was there, with the use of a vehicle non-intrusive imaging system that officers discovered 18 packages of alleged cocaine hidden within the Isuzu. CBP OFO seized the 46 pounds of narcotics valued at $355,000 and the vehicle.
The second seizure occurred on the same date and border crossing after CBP officers referred a white 2009 Volkswagen driven by a 42-year-old male Mexican citizen from Juarez, Nuevo Leon, Mexico for a secondary inspection. While inspecting the vehicle, officers discovered two packages of alleged cocaine weighing approximately 4.59 pounds concealed within the Volkswagen. CBP OFO seized the cocaine which carries an estimated street value of $35,000 and seized the vehicle as well.
CBP OFO arrested both travelers and subsequently released them to the custody of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) 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.