EL PASO, TEXAS—U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations officers working at the El Paso port of entry seized 2,804 ecstasy tablets Monday night. An El Paso man was taken into custody in the case.
"CBP officers remain vigilant and ready to respond to any and all drug smuggling attempts," said Hector Mancha, CBP El Paso Port Director.
The seizure was made at approximately 8:30 p.m. Monday night when a 2005 Dodge Stratus entered the Bridge of the Americas international crossing from Mexico. CBP officers were performing a sweep of vehicles in the queue before the primary inspection booths when CBP drug sniffing dog "Shake" alerted to the car. CBP officers initiated an exam of the vehicle and located two large plastic bags filled with orange, purple and white pills hidden in the center console. The pills tested positive for the properties of ecstasy.
CBP officers took custody of the driver, 23-year-old David Valdez of El Paso, Texas. He was turned over to and arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement HSI special agents to face federal charges in connection with the failed smuggling attempt. He is currently being detained without bond at the El Paso County Jail.
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.