PRESIDIO, Texas — U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operations officers working at the Presidio port of entry on three separate occasions seized 15 pounds cocaine, 45 pounds methamphetamine, and 31 handguns all within a six-day period. The street value of the drugs is $389,000 and the market value of the weapons is $14,675.
“Our Nation’s security at the border requires CBP officers to be vigilant for all types of contraband and concealment methods,” said Michael Neipert, CBP Presidio Port Director, “Presidio CBP officers do an excellent job of detecting contraband.”
The first seizure was made at 9:30 p.m. on Friday, February 1when a 36-year-old Mexican citizen male driver applied for entry at the primary inspection station driving a 2011 Dodge Journey. The vehicle was referred for an x-ray exam where anomalies were observed in the dashboard area of the vehicle. Officers removed six foil-wrapped bundles which field tested positive for cocaine.
The second seizure occurred on Sunday, February 3 at 11:30 a.m. when a 1993 Chevy Silverado driven by a 62-year-old male Mexican citizen driver arrived at the primary inspection booth. The vehicle was referred for an x-ray exam and anomalies were observed in the spare tire of the vehicle. After dismantling the spare tire, officers removed 50 bundles containing a substance which field tested positive for methamphetamine.
On February 6h CBP officers were conducting outbound operations when a 2006 Ford F-250 pick-up towing a 2011 Ford E-350 passenger van and driven by a 54-year-old naturalized U.S. citizen was selected for an intensive inspection. Inspection of the van resulted in discovery of a non-factory compartment in the firewall of the vehicle. Visual inspection of the inside of the compartment revealed a number of weapons in vacuum sealed bags. A total of 31 automatic handguns and 48 assorted magazines were removed from the compartment.
CBP officers took custody of and arrested all three individuals who were turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement HSI agents in connection with the failed smuggling attempts.
While anti-terrorism is the primary mission of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the inspection process at the ports of entry associated with this mission results in impressive numbers of enforcement actions in all categories.