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Agents nab drugs and cash at border

  1. buseman
    SAN DIEGO — It was a busy weekend at the San Diego border crossings for federal officers who seized more than 3,000 pounds of drugs and confiscated $22,000 in undeclared currency in separate busts, authorities reported Monday.

    On Friday, a 42-year-old Mexican truck driver entered the Otay Mesa Port of Entry hauling sea shells.

    A gamma ray image of the cargo showed anomalies, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers found hiding among the shells 203 bundles of marijuana weighing about 2,400 pounds and 50 packages of methamphetamine weighing about 150 pounds.

    The street value of the drugs was put at more than $3 million.

    On Saturday, a Tijuana man entered the port driving a Toyota pickup with wood furniture in the bed.

    With help from a gamma ray image and a drug dog, officers found 467 pounds of pot hidden in the furniture, customs officials said.

    Both men were taken into federal custody, and the drugs and vehicles were seized.

    The next morning, officers conducting southbound inspections at the San Ysidro border crossing stopped a Dodge Stratus.

    Officers discovered $20,300 stuffed in a speaker box in the trunk and $1,935 on the 20-year-old driver and his two passengers.

    The three were released pending further investigation. The cash and vehicle were seized.

    Also on Friday, Border Patrol agents on patrol near the international border in Boulevard discovered 135 pounds of marijuana hidden under a pile of branches and wood boards, authorities said.

    The drugs, with an estimated street value of about $68,000, were seized. No one was arrested.


    MONDAY, JUNE 7, 2010


  1. buseman
    CBP in California Intercepts Narcotics, Currency, including $3 Million Worth in Shipment of Seashells
    San Diego — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Otay Mesa passenger and cargo ports of entry over the weekend seized more than 3,000 pounds of narcotics valued at $3.3 million and confiscated $22,235 hidden in a speaker box.

    Friday afternoon at about 12:10 p.m., a 42-year-old male Mexican citizen entered the Otay Mesa cargo facility driving a 2000 Freightliner tractor pulling a 1989 Wabash trailer with cargo manifested as dry sea shells.

    A CBP officer referred the conveyance to the secondary area for further investigation.

    Officers ran the tractor trailer through the port’s gamma ray imaging system that showed anomalies with the cargo.

    When officers unloaded the shipment they found packages hidden within the bags of sea shells.

    They probed two of the packages, revealing a green leafy substance from one package and a crystal like substance from another.

    Officers subsequently discovered 203 wrapped packages of marijuana weighing 2,435 pounds and 50 packages of methamphetamine weighing 150 pounds with a total street value of more than $3 million.

    The driver was arrested by agents with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement who transported him to the Metropolitan Correctional Center. CBP seized the narcotics and conveyance.

    The next morning at the Otay Mesa passenger port at about 10:10 a.m., a 48-year-old Tijuana man entered the border station driving a 1994 Toyota pickup truck with wood furniture in the bed of the truck.

    The processing CBP officer referred the vehicle and driver for a more intensive examination.

    During the secondary examination, the vehicle was run through the port’s X-ray imaging system which revealed anomalies in the wood furniture.

    Officers used a narcotic detector dog to screen the vehicle which led them to the discovery of 151 wrapped packages of marijuana weighing 467 pounds and valued at $233,500 hidden in the furniture.

    The driver was arrested and transported to the Metropolitan Correctional Center. CBP seized the vehicle and marijuana.

    On Sunday morning at 11:30 a.m. officers from the San Ysidro port of entry conducting southbound inspections on the I-5 freeway pulled aside a 2005 Dodge Stratus, the 20-year-old driver and his two passengers for further inspection.

    During the course of the inspection, officers found a speaker box in the trunk of the Stratus where they discovered $20,300 inside the speaker and found an additional $1,935 on the three occupants.

    CBP seized the $22,235 of undeclared currency and the vehicle.

    Monday, June 07, 2010
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