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CBP Officers at San Ysidro Find 701 Pounds of Marijuana in a Bus

Release Date: 
May 24, 2012

San Ysidro, Calif. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the San Ysidro port of entry yesterday morning discovered 701 pounds of marijuana in the gas tank of a commercial bus.

Marijuana packages in gas tank compartment in commercial bus.

Marijuana packages in gas tank compartment in commercial bus.

On Tuesday, May 22, 2012, at about 7 a.m., a 37-year-old male Mexican citizen, driving a 1994 Prevo commercial bus entered the port for inspection with 22 passengers. A canine team was screening vehicles in the area when the detector dog alerted to the right side of the buses undercarriage.

CBP officers conducted an intensive inspection of the bus and found a specially-built, hidden compartment in the gas tank. They removed 177 packages from the compartment containing marijuana worth an estimated $350,000.

The driver, a resident Tijuana, Mexico, was arrested and booked into the Metropolitan Correctional Center pending federal arraignment for the attempted illegal importation of narcotics.

CBP officers seized the bus and marijuana.

"Although we have many types of x-ray technology, our greatest assets are our CBP officers and canine handlers who have a keen ability in ferreting out secret compartments that conceal contraband," said Frank Jaramillo, port director of the San Ysidro and Otay Mesa passenger port of entry. "This skill set and the continued vigilance of our officers play a critical role in combating narcotic trafficking."

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.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017