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CBP Seizes $254,000 in Drugs Hidden in Unusual compartments

Release Date: 
September 13, 2010

San Diego - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers this weekend seized $254,000 worth of drugs in various compartments, ranging from bicycle frames to the rollers of a street paving machine.

On September 10 at 1:30 p.m. officers at the Tecate port of entry seized 127 pounds of marijuana from the inside of the rollers of a street paving machine. The officer at the booth referred the truck carrying the street paving machine for further inspection, where a narcotic detector dog was alerted while screening the truck and paving machine. Officers x-rayed the truck and paving machine and found anomalies inside the rollers. During a closer inspection, the covers of the rollers were removed and officers seized 63 packages of marijuana with an approximate street value of $63,580. The driver of the truck, a 21-year-old male Mexican citizen and resident of Tijuana, Mex., was arrested and turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents.

That same day at 5:30 p.m. officers at the Otay Mesa port of entry encountered a 22-year-old male U.S. citizen and resident of Watsonville, Calif. who had entered the U.S. through the pedestrian entry with his bicycle. A narcotic detector dog alerted to the scent of narcotics in his bicycle. He was escorted to secondary inspection, where officers discovered two trap doors in the frame of the bicycle. Officers removed nine packages of marijuana from the frame of the bicycle with an approximate street value of $660. The subject was arrested and turned over to ICE agents.

On September 11 at 3 p.m., the officer in the pedestrian booth at the San Ysidro port of entry noticed how a 21-year-old male U.S. citizen and resident of Tijuana was walking. The officer stopped the man and escorted him to secondary inspection for a closer look. After a pat down, the officer discovered four packages of heroin taped to his legs. The heroin weight was almost five pounds with an approximate street value of $66,220. The young man was arrested and turned over to ICE agents.

Hours later at 11:50 p.m., another officer encountered a 33-year-old male U.S. citizen and resident of Chino Hills, Calif. The officer referred the man to secondary inspection and during a pat down officers discovered two packages of methamphetamine taped to his legs. The methamphetamine weighed almost seven pounds and has an approximate street value of $123,480. The man was arrested and turned over to ICE agents.

While CBP officers inspect the people and vehicles entering the U.S., another set of CBP officers is conducting inspections on people and vehicles departing the country. They are looking for money and weapons that fuel the drug trafficking organizations' wars in Mexico.

At 11 a.m. on September 11, CBP officers conducting southbound inspections encountered a 20-year-old male U.S. citizen and resident of San Diego. The young man was referred for secondary inspection. CBP officers discovered that he had $16,297 that he did not declare. Customs and Border Protection seized the money.

It is a federal offense not to declare currency or monetary instruments totaling more than $10,000 to a CBP officer upon entry or exit from the U.S. or to conceal it with intent to evade reporting requirements. Failure to declare may result in seizure of the currency and/or arrest.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017