Imperial Valley, Calif. – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the Imperial Valley ports of entry over the last four days stopped almost $1.5 million worth of narcotics from entering the United States.
Officers at the Andrade and Calexico ports of entry made several significant seizures of marijuana, cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine, weighing 589 lbs.
One of the seizures occurred at about 1:00 p.m. yesterday, March 28, at the Calexico downtown port of entry after an officer detected signs of nervousness from a 22-year-old female U.S. citizen driving a 1996 Toyota 4-Runner. As the officer detected signs of nervousness, a canine unit screening vehicles also alerted to 4-Runner. The driver and vehicle were escorted for further examination.
An intensive inspection of the 4-Runner led officers to the discovery of 20 wrapped packages of cocaine concealed inside the vehicle’s gas tank. The weight of the cocaine was 52 pounds with a street value of approximately $468,000.
The driver, a resident of Mexicali, Baja California, was arrested for the alleged narcotic smuggling attempt.
Another seizure occurred an hour and fifteen minutes later at the Andrade port of entry when a canine unit screening vehicles alerted to the auxiliary fuel tank mounted on the bed of a Ford F-350 pickup truck. The driver, a 28-year-old male Mexican citizen, and the vehicle were referred for further examination.
During the intensive examination, CBP officers utilized a fiber optic scope on the auxiliary tank which led to the discovery of 13 large wrapped packages of marijuana. The weight of the marijuana was 235 pounds with a street value of approximately $106,800.
The driver, a resident of Puerto Penasco, Sonora, was arrested for the alleged narcotic smuggling attempt.
On Friday, March 25, at the Calexico East port of entry, an officer and canine unit conducted an intensive examination on a brown 2002 Chrysler PT Cruiser and discovered 20 wrapped packages of cocaine concealed within the vehicle’s roof. The weight of the cocaine was 50 pounds with an estimated street value of $450,000.
The driver, a 22- year-old male Mexican citizen and resident of Ensenada, Baja California, was arrested for the alleged narcotic smuggling attempt.
In all incidents, the drivers were turned over to the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents who in turn transported them to the Imperial County Jail where they currently await arraignment.
CBP seized the vehicles and narcotics.