EL PASO, TEXAS – Trying to smuggle drugs through a border port of entry is generally not the brightest idea. But that didn’t stop one smuggler from trying to do so with some colorfully wrapped bundles of contraband.
CBP officers working at the Bridge of the Americas Sunday stopped a vehicle containing 19 bundles of cocaine and methamphetamine. The packages were wrapped in bright blue, yellow and red tape instead of the traditional black most commonly used.
“While the wrapping of choice was novel what is most important here is that CBP officers stopped a significant amount of drugs from reaching their intended destination,” said Ray Provencio, acting CBP El Paso Port Director.
The seizure was made just after noon Sunday when a 2014 Chevrolet Aveo with a single male driver entered the port from Mexico. A CBP officer at the primary inspection station initiated an exam and noted high “Buster” density meter readings consistent with hidden contraband while checking the rear doors. A CBP drug sniffing dog searched the car and alerted to the doors. CBP officers scanned the vehicle with the Z-Portal x-ray system and noted anomalies in the doors.
CBP officers continued the exam and found drug filled bundles in the doors. Seventeen bundles contained 28.3 pounds of methamphetamine and the other two bundles held 4.9 pounds of cocaine. CBP officers arrested the driver of the car, a 26-year-old citizen of Mexico. He was turned over to ICE Homeland Security Investigations to face charges associated with the failed smuggling attempt.
During the last four days CBP officers working in the El Paso ports of entry have recorded eight drug seizures seizing 438 pounds of marijuana, 28.3 pounds of methamphetamine, and 23.2 pounds of cocaine. Six NCIC fugitives were apprehended during the period. CBP officers also stopped 10 agriculture violations resulting in $2,400 in penalties being assessed. Prohibited items included pork, raw chicken apricots, apples, figs, mangos and potatoes.