Sterling, VA - They could have been part of a very expensive bed, but the cocaine-filled bed post knobs seized by Customs and Border Protection officers at Washington Dulles International Airport Thursday night will instead be destroyed.
The bed post knobs were in a group of goods carried by courier aboard a Taca Airlines flight that arrived at about 11 p.m. from El Salvador. CBP agriculture specialists passed the commercial goods through an x-ray during a secondary examination. That x-ray detected an anomaly inside the knobs.
Officers dug into the knobs and discovered a white, powdery substance that field-tested positive for the presence of cocaine. Total weight was 245 grams, or about 8.64 ounces; street value was estimated at approximately $17,000.
"This seizure shows great cooperation between CBP officers and agriculture specialists. They each focus on different targets - insect pests, and plant and animal diseases for agriculture specialists; violations of any one of 400 federal laws and regulations for officers -- but who each execute a very similar mission. That mission is to protect Americans against potentially harmful things," said Christopher Hess, CBP port director for the Port of Washington, D.C. "CBP employees remain steadfastly committed to keeping our nation and our citizens safe against bad people and bad things."
The knobs were allegedly destined for an address in New York.
CBP released the courier to return to El Salvador.
CBP routinely conducts random inspection operations on arriving and departing passengers searching for narcotics, currency, weapons and other prohibited or illicit products.
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.