NOGALES, ARIZ.—A tractor-trailer load of Mexican squash, co-mingled with a $10.1 million shipment of marijuana, was stopped at the port of Nogales Wednesday by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers assigned to the Mariposa commercial facility.
Pedro Corona-Moreno, 32, of Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico, was referred for a routine inspection of his load of produce as he was entering the United States. When the shipment was offloaded, a CBP canine alerted to the presence of marijuana…881 bundles of it weighing 20,375 pounds.
Wednesday’s seizure surpasses Arizona’s previous record of 14,121 pounds of marijuana - $7.1 million worth -- seized Jan. 15 of this year.
The tractor-trailer, drugs and produce were processed for seizure. The driver was arrested and turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.
Director of Field Operations for the Tucson Field Office, Roderick Blanchard, credits his officers’ diligence.
“Our continued success is a direct reflection of the caliber of officers serving at our ports,” he said. “Their dedication and commitment is unmatched.”
Individuals arrested may be charged by complaint, the method by which a person is charged with criminal activity, which raises no inference of guilt. An individual is presumed innocent unless and until competent evidence is presented to a jury that establishes guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
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.