SWANTON, Vt. – On June 6, the U.S. Border Patrol Swanton Sector presented New York State Police with a check for $29,777.44 and the keys to a vehicle closing out a case from 2015.
On August 15, 2015, Border Patrol agents assigned to the Massena Station stopped two vehicles they witnessed illegally enter the United States from Canada. A search of the vehicles revealed a large duffle bag with several vacuum sealed bags of marijuana totaling 35.2 pounds that was valued at $104,800.00 and a vacuum sealed brick of U.S. currency totaling $63,900.
The vehicles and currency were seized by the U.S. Border Patrol under Title 19, US Code Sections 1607 and 1609 and were subsequently forfeited. NYSP was contacted at the time and responded taking custody of the marijuana and drug paraphernalia, while USBP retained custody of the seized currency. The three subjects involved in the incident were arrested and charged under New York State Penal Law. All three defendants in the case pled guilty to associated charges.
Based on the investigation and criminal prosecution efforts of the NYSP, USBP Swanton Sector initiated an asset sharing case with the U.S. Treasury Forfeiture Fund on behalf of the NYSP. On June 1, USBP was notified that approximately half of the currency, $29,777.44, and one of the vehicles was approved to be awarded to NYSP.
In a ceremony on June 6, Swanton Sector Chief John Pfeifer presented NYSP Captain Robert Lafountain a check and keys to one of the vehicles. “This case, just one of many, highlights the outstanding cooperation between the NYSP and USBP in our efforts to secure our borders and make our communities safer,” said Pfeifer.
The Swanton Sector is responsible for securing the land border between ports of entry in Vermont, New Hampshire and northeastern New York. The assistance of citizens is invaluable to the Border Patrol's border security mission and we welcome community members' help to keep our nation’s borders safe. Please report suspicious activity at 1-800-689-3362.
For more on Customs and Border Protection’s mission at our nation’s ports of entry with CBP officers and along U.S. borders with Border Patrol agents, please visit the Border Security section of the CBP website.
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.