U.S. Border and Customs announced that they had seized 3,100 pounds of methamphetamine, fentanyl powder, fentanyl pills, and heroin as part of the second-largest methamphetamine bust along the southwest border in the history of the agency, based on information developed by DEA, working jointly with HSI.
“Smugglers will try every way possible to try and get their product across the border, and because of the partnership between CBP, Homeland Security investigations, and DEA this significant seizure occurred and we stopped them,” said Anne Maricich, acting CBP director of field operations in San Diego. “I’m proud of the CBP officers’ dedication to our mission; they continue to stop dangerous drugs from entering our communities.”
On Oct. 9, at about 9:45 a.m., a driver on a semi-tractor trailer manifested as medical supplies arrived at the cargo border crossing in San Diego. The Officer working the checkpoint decided to send the truck to the secondary inspection area for a more in-depth inspection.
The truck was x-rayed using the ports x-ray system and found anomalies within the rear of the tractor-trailer. A canine was brought in to search the tractor-trailer. During the search, the canine alerted to the boxes inside the trailer.
Once the tractor-trailer was unloaded, and a search of the cargo was completed, the officers discovered 1,816 packages of the various drugs mixed in with the medical supplies.
The medical supplies included clear plastic pipette tips, spray bottles of surface decontaminate and calibrated pipette tools.
“This massive seizure is a testament of what law enforcement agencies can do when we combine forces – prevent over $7 million worth of deadly drugs from entering our country; thus saving countless lives from addiction and overdose deaths,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge John W. Callery. “DEA cherishes our great law enforcement partners in San Diego, especially those who work tirelessly to protect our nation’s borders. We will continue to work together to disrupt drug trafficking organizations at every opportunity we are given.”
The tractor-trailer driver, a 47-year old male Mexican citizen, was arrested and turned over the custody of the joint investigative team from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations and the Drug Enforcement Administration; he will face criminal charges.