California CBP Officers Halt Attempts to Smuggle More Than $2.6 Million Worth of Narcotics

072514-blackheroin-wpoe-p#2-FY14SAN DIEGO — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at ports of entry along the California/Mexico border over the weekend intercepted 15 attempts to smuggle more than a ton of various narcotics, valued at approximately $2.6 million.


CBP officers at the six land ports of entry foiled attempts to smuggle heroin, cocaine, marijuana, and methamphetamine concealed in various areas of vehicles such as inside gas tanks, floors, tires, and inside the roof of a commercial trailer.


Two enforcement actions are highlighted below:


Shortly after 1:30 p.m. on Friday, July 25, a 47-year-old male Mexican citizen entered the Calexico downtown port of entry driving a 2005 Ford F-150 pickup.  A CBP officer referred the vehicle and driver for a more in-depth inspection.


While conducting an intensive search of the pickup, officers utilized the port’s imaging system and detected anomalies within both of the vehicle’s quarter panels.  Officers continued their inspection and ultimately discovered 11 wrapped packages of heroin hidden inside compartments built into the vehicle’s fenders.


The second incident occurred at about 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 26, when CBP officers encountered a 2001 Freightliner tractor-trailer that entered the Otay Mesa commercial facility carrying a shipment of watermelons.  Officers referred the truck and trailer to the dock for further examination.


Officers utilized the port’s imaging system and discovered anomalies within the roof of the trailer.  They drilled into a section of the roof and ultimately discovered 41 wrapped bundles stashed inside a hidden compartment built along the length of the trailer.


The bundles field-tested positive as marijuana and yielded a total weight of more than 1,570 pounds.  The marijuana has an estimated street value of more than $940,000.


In both cases, the drivers were turned over to the custody of Homeland Security Investigations agents for further processing.

CBP seized the vehicles and narcotics.


CBP officers also captured 18 other individuals wanted on outstanding felony warrants for such crimes as burglary, dangerous drugs, parole violations, and fraud.


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.