Douglas, Ariz. - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers stopped a sophisticated smuggling attempt when they seized 28 pounds of marijuana concealed inside special made metal cylinders concealed in a gas tank.
On Jan. 23 at approximately 2 p.m. CBP officers were screening traffic coming from Mexico. The officers selected a 2004 PT Cruiser for inspection. The vehicle was driven by a 21-year-old man who was identified as a U.S. citizen and resident of Tempe. With the assistance of a narcotics detection K-9 team the CBP officers discovered that the gas tank of the PT Cruiser contained 25 metal cylinders. Each cylinder contained marijuana that had been loaded by means of a hydraulic press and then capped off so as not to be contaminated by the gasoline. The total weight of marijuana was 28 pounds with an estimated value of $13,000.
CBP officers seized the vehicle and the marijuana. The man was turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement for further investigation and prosecution.
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The Office of Field Operations is responsible for securing our borders at the ports of entry. 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.
While anti-terrorism is the primary mission of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the inspection process at the ports of entry associated with this mission results in impressive numbers of enforcement actions in all categories.
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.