TUCSON, Ariz. – Customs and Border Protection officers recently arrested three people connected to separate attempts to smuggle cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana through the Port of Nogales on Monday.
Officers at the Dennis DeConcini crossing selected a Honda sedan, driven by Jessica Gastelum-Estrada, 24, a U.S. citizen living in Nogales, Sonora, Mexico, for further inspection and located more than five pounds of cocaine in the vehicle’s battery. The cocaine is valued at nearly $54,000.
A short time later, officers at the Mariposa crossing referred Martin Borquez-Burrola, 30, of Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico, for further inspection of his Ford SUV. After a CBP narcotics detection canine alerted to the presence of drugs within the flooring, officers removed packages of marijuana weighing nearly 33 pounds and valued at $16,000. They also removed five packages of methamphetamine weighing more than six pounds and worth nearly $19,000.
Monday night, officers at the Mariposa crossing selected a Ford SUV, driven by Melesio Rivera, 64, of Tucson for further inspection. After a narcotics canine alerted to the presence of drugs within the dashboard, officers removed 14 packages of cocaine weighing nearly 38 pounds and valued at close to $394,000.
Officers processed the vehicles and drugs for seizure, and referred all three subjects to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.
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.