EL PASO, Texas -- U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations officers working at the El Paso port of entry seized 310 pounds of marijuana Saturday. The drugs were hidden in the bed, rear wall and door of a pick-up truck. The estimated street value of the seized contraband is $248,000.
“This smuggler used almost every square inch of space he could in an attempt to transport a large drug load into the country,” said Beverly Good, CBP El Paso Port Director. “The thorough inspections CBP officers perform prevented this load from reaching its final destination.”
The seizure was made just before noon July 22 when a 2000 GMC Sierra arrived at the Paso Del Norte international crossing from Mexico. A CBP officer working at the primary inspection station noted an issue with the back wall of the pick-up and referred the vehicle for a secondary exam. A CBP drug sniffing canine searched the vehicle and alerted to the presence of drugs. An x-ray exam also identified several suspicious areas in the truck. CBP officers continued the exam and found bundles of marijuana beneath the bed liner of the truck as well as in one door and along the rear wall of the cab interior.
CBP officers took custody of the driver, a 41-year-old citizen of Mexico. He was turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement HSI agents to face charges associated with the failed drug 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.