A United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) dog sniffed out 354 pounds of meth concealed in the bed of a pickup truck that crossed the U.S.-Mexico border. With the help of the drug-sniffing dog, officers seized the confiscated drugs at the Paso Del Norte international crossing. The bridge crosses the Rio Grande, and links El Paso, Texas, with Ciudad Juárez in the state of Chihuahua, Mexico.
Smuggler concealed 354 pounds of meth
In a statement from the U.S Customs and Border Protection, authorities discovered and confiscated the drugs on Saturday, Nov. 18.
“This is an enormous seizure and demonstrates the need for CBP officers to remain vigilant at all times,” said Hector Mancha, the director of field operation at U.S. Customs and Border Protection El Paso, in the release. “CBP officers utilized a variety of tools to identify and stop this smuggler.”
As per reporting by CBS News, the confiscation took place shortly before 4 p.m. during a “pre-primary enforcement operation” conducted by CBP officers. Just south of the inspection booths, officials came across a Dodge Ram truck driven by a 31-year-old woman. A CBP drug-sniffing dog detected something in the bed of the pickup, alerting officers. Following the alert, officers escorted the vehicle to the secondary exam area.
After CBP officers conducted a Z-Portal x-ray scan on the vehicle, a subsequent physical examination uncovered 161 foil-wrapped bundles, amounting to 354 pounds of meth concealed beneath the truck bed liner. Testing confirmed that the contents of these bundles were positive for methamphetamine. After which, the driver was then taken into custody by CBP officers. She was later transferred to the Texas Department of Public Safety to face charges related to the unsuccessful smuggling.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection did not disclose details about the charges.
Increase in drug confiscation at US border
In recent months, border patrol agents at various locations along the U.S.-Mexico border have also successfully prevented other suspected smuggling attempts involving significant quantities of illicit drugs.
In September, law enforcement officers confiscated 384 packages, totaling 870 pounds of methamphetamine. The confiscation occurred at a port near Laredo, situated on the far eastern side of the Texas border, as reported by CBS Texas. Officials found the illicit drugs concealed within a shipment of limes. The estimated street value exceeds $7.7 million.
Similarly in El Paso, located on the western side of the Texas-Mexico border, authorities reported encountering 802 pounds of methamphetamine throughout 2021, according to U.S. CBP as shared by CBS Texas. This marked a 133% increase in methamphetamine seizures compared to previous years.