San Diego — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at local ports of entry Wednesday intercepted approximately $2.4 million worth of cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana during two separate smuggling attempts.
The first incident occurred on Jan.29, at about 11:15 a.m., when CBP officers encountered a tractor-trailer that entered the Otay Mesa cargo facility with a shipment of clay pottery. A CBP officer selected the tractor and trailer for further examination.
During the examination, CBP officers utilized the port’s imaging system and detected anomalies within the boxes of clay pottery. Officers continued searching the conveyance and discovered 60 wrapped packages of marijuana comingled within the boxes of merchandise.
A total of 1,426 pounds of marijuana was seized, valued at approximately $641,000.
The second incident occurred later in the day, at about 3:30 p.m., when officers at the San Ysidro port of entry encountered a 37-year-old male and his 38-year-old female passenger after they arrived at the port in a 2007 Ford Edge. Officers referred the vehicle and occupants for further inspection.
During the inspection, officers utilized the port’s imaging system and a detector dog that alerted to the cargo area of the vehicle. An intensive search revealed 18 wrapped packages of cocaine and 17 packages of methamphetamine in the cargo area and foot well of the vehicle.
A combined weight of about 130 pounds of narcotics was removed from the vehicle, valued at approximately $1.8 million.
The driver and passenger, both Mexican citizens and residents of Tijuana, Baja California, were arrested and turned over to the custody of HSI agents for further processing. Both were later transported to the Metropolitan Correctional Center to await arraignment.
CBP seized the vehicles and narcotics.
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.