TUCSON, Ariz. – Customs and Border Protection officers arrested three Mexican nationals and a U.S. citizen involved in separate weekend attempts to smuggle heroin and methamphetamine through the Port of Nogales.
Officers at the Mariposa crossing referred a 53-year-old Rio Rico, Ariz. man for a secondary inspection of his Ford van on Saturday morning (Oct. 8). After a CBP narcotics-detection canine alerted to the vehicle’s rear quarter panels, officers seized close to 31 pounds of meth, worth nearly $92,000.
Later that day, a CBP canine working alongside officers at the DeConcini crossing helped locate nearly six pounds of heroin, valued at nearly $100,000. The drugs were hidden within the lining of a backpack inside of a Kia sedan belonging to the 38-year-old Mexican national female driver.
A third seizure Saturday at the Mariposa crossing also involved a canine alert to the presence of drugs within a Toyota sedan. Officers discovered nearly 21 pounds of meth within the dashboard of the vehicle belonging to a 25-year-old Mexican national female from Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. The drugs are worth more than $65,000.
On Oct. 9, officers at the Mariposa crossing referred a 32-year-old Mexican national male from Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico, for further inspection of her Chevy van and discovered more than 20 pounds of meth. The drugs are worth nearly $61,000.
Officers seized all drugs and vehicles used in the smuggling attempts, and turned the subjects over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.