SANTA TERESA, N.M.--U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations officers working at the Santa Teresa port of entry seized more than 52 pounds of marijuana late Tuesday, valued at approximately $40,000.
"This seizure was the result of hard work and vigilance by CBP officers utilizing a combination of tools and leveraging their experience to detect a deeply concealed drug load," said CBP Santa Teresa Port Director Ray Provencio. "The complexity of this concealment method shows the degree to which smugglers go to introduce contraband to the streets of our communities."
The seizure was made Tuesday afternoon when a 2009 Pontiac G6 with an adult male driver entered the port from Mexico. A CBP officer initiated a secondary examination and noticed an anomaly in the appearance of the floor of the vehicle. The officer probed the suspicious location and recovered a substance which tested positive for marijuana.
A total of 48 marijuana-filled bundles, welded within aluminum boxes and hidden under a false floorboard, were recovered.
CBP officers arrested a 21-year-old American male driver from El Paso, Texas. He was turned over to ICE HSI special agents to face charges in connection with the failed smuggling attempt.
While anti-terrorism is the primary mission of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the inspection process at the ports of entry associated with this mission results in impressive numbers of enforcement actions in all categories.
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.