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El Paso Man Facing Smuggling Charges After CBP Finds Marijuana

Release Date: 
September 25, 2012

El Paso, Texas - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers working at the El Paso port of entry seized 150 pounds of marijuana in three seizures Monday. The larger of the two busts netted 118 pounds of marijuana and the arrest of an El Paso man.

"CBP officers encounter numerous violators everyday while performing their homeland security mission," said CBP El Paso Port Director Hector Mancha. "Every seizure, every arrest, and every intercept we make is important in maintaining the safety and security of our nation."

The seizure was made just after 4 p.m. at the Paso Del Norte international crossing while CBP officers were performing a sweep of vehicles waiting in line at the downtown crossing. CBP drug sniffing dog "Lady" alerted to a 1997 Ford F-150 pickup truck. CBP officers initiated a secondary inspection and located two large metal boxes inside the fuel tank of the truck. CBP officers opened the metal boxes and removed numerous drug filled bundles. The marijuana weighed 118 pounds.

Drugs seized by El Paso, TX CBP officers.

CBP officers took custody of the driver, 22-year-old Justyn Jose Mendoza of El Paso, Texas. He was arrested by HSI special agents to face federal charges in connection with the failed smuggling attempt. He is currently being held without bond at the El Paso County Jail.

CBP officers working at El Paso area ports of entry Monday made two additional drug busts, apprehended three NCIC fugitives, recorded two illegal export violations, and made five interceptions of prohibited agricultural items.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers' primary mission is anti-terrorism; they screen all people, vehicles, and goods entering the United States, while facilitating the flow of legitimate trade and travel into and out of the United States. Their mission also includes carrying out traditional border-related responsibilities, including narcotics interdiction, enforcing immigration law, protecting the nation's food supply and agriculture industry from pests and diseases, and enforcing trade laws.

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 official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017