Officers seize canned concoction of banned broth
PHILADELPHIA – The shipment may have been manifested as chicken vegetable soup, but Philadelphia U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers soon realized that the brothy bouillon before them was canned criminal consommé.
While inspecting international express delivery parcels on Wednesday, CBP officers encountered a shipment that consisted of 12 liter-sized cans labeled as “Dutch Canned Vegetable Chicken Soup.” The cans, which were shipped from the Netherlands, appeared to be leaking a purple liquid.
Officers used an elemental isotope analysis tool and identified the cans’ contents as MDMA hydrochloride. MDMA (3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphatemine) is a synthetic commonly known as ecstasy.
According to the DEA, MDMA, also known as molly, is a Schedule I drug under the Controlled Substances Act. It is abused as a party drug and is sometimes mixed with other, more dangerous chemicals, such as methamphetamine or ketamine that could lead to accidental overdoses.
CBP officers seized the liquid MDMA, which weighed 11 kilograms, or 24 pounds, 4 ounces, and secured the 12 leaky cans in plastic containers. The shipment was destined to an address in Miami.
An investigation continues.
“Crooked consumers continue to purchase dangerous drugs and controlled substances from unscrupulous international vendors, chemicals that consist of unverified ingredients that could potentially harm or kill our nation’s citizens. Customs and Border Protection officers remain steadfast in our commitment to searching through the proverbial haystack to intercept the needle of illicit shipments,” said Joseph Martella, CBP’s Area Port Director in Philadelphia.
CBP seized or disrupted an average of 4,732 pounds of dangerous drugs every day across the United States during fiscal year 2021. See what else CBP accomplished during a typical day in 2021.
CBP's border security mission is led at ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations. CBP officers screen international travelers and cargo and search for illicit narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products that could potentially harm the American public, U.S. businesses, and our nation’s safety and economic vitality.
Follow the Director of CBP’s Baltimore Field Office on Twitter at @DFOBaltimore for breaking news, current events, human interest stories and photos, and CBP’s Office of Field Operations on Instagram at @cbpfieldops.