JAMAICA, N.Y.—U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized approximately 150,000 counterfeit and prohibited pharmaceuticals in a three-day operation at the international mail facility at John F. Kennedy Airport in early March.
"The men and women of CBP protect our nation's economy, the safety of its people, and our national security against the harm of counterfeit goods," said Robert E. Perez, Director of Field Operations in New York. "These interceptions are indicative of the benefit of combining the industry expertise of the CEEs with the experience of our CBP officers."
The manufacturer's suggested retail price of the seized pharmaceuticals was $1.9 million. The seizures reflect CBP's ongoing efforts to enhance enforcement efforts against the importation of pharmaceuticals that pose health and safety risks to American consumers.
Staff from CBP's Pharmaceutical, Health and Chemicals Center of Excellence and Expertise in New York worked side-by side with CBP officers at the mail facility and agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations to target and examine these potentially dangerous products. The CEEs are a central point of contact for inquiries to CBP and resolution of issues regarding pharmaceutical, health and chemical imports.
In Fiscal Year 2012, the Pharmaceutical, Health and Chemicals CEE coordinated enforcement activities resulting in the seizure of approximately 119,000 counterfeit pills, 1,000 vials of anabolic steroids, and 8.6 pounds of prohibited controlled substances.
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.