TUCSON, AZ (KOLD News 13) - It has been a busy last few days for U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers at the Nogales Port of Entry, as they seize more than 300 pounds of cocaine, heroin, fentanyl and methamphetamine and arrest seven people for attempted drug smuggling.
Two incidents occurred on Friday, May 3, at the Dennis DeConcini Crossing the first taking place in the morning when a 20-year-old Tucson man had his sedan pulled for secondary inspection after the CBP canine alerted to it. Officers found 90 packages of drugs hidden in the doors and quarter panels of the vehicle. The packages contained more than one-pound of fentanyl, worth more than $16,000; more than 86 pounds of meth, with an estimated value of nearly $259,000; in addition to almost 29 pounds of heroin, worth more than $781,000; and more than 17 pounds of cocaine, worth in excess of $419,000.
A 66-year-old Tucson man had his Ford truck pulled, thanks to an alert from a canine. Officers removed more than 70 packages of drugs from the rear cabin wall and spare tire. Those packages contained 19 pounds of fentanyl, worth almost $260,000; as well as more than 68 pounds of meth, worth nearly $205,000; and more than 9 pounds of heroin, worth $253,000.
To more incidents happened on Friday, this time at the Mariposa Crossing pedestrian gate, as a 15-year-old girl was pulled for further questioning by officers. According to a CBP news release the teen voluntarily removed a package from her underwear that contained one pound of fentanyl pills, worth more than $11,000.
Later that same afternoon a 33-year-old from Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico had his vehicle pulled for inspection after the canine alerted to his gas tank. CBP officers discovered 30 packages of methamphetamine inside it, weighing 56 pounds and worth an estimated $167,000.
A 39-year-old Rio Rico woman was pulled for questioning by CBP officers at the Morley Pedestrian Gate. She voluntarily removed a package of drugs from an internal cavity, CBP determined the drugs were a half pound of fentanyl pills, worth an estimated $7,200.
The new week began on Monday, May 6 with officers at the DeConcini Crossing referring a 44-year-old man from Mexico for secondary inspection of his sedan. The CBP canine alerted to the vehicle's rear tires, and when officers searched them they found nearly 15 pounds of methamphetamine, worth an estimated $45,000.
On Tuesday, May 7 a 29-year-old man from Mexico had his SUV pulled for secondary inspection by CBP officers, and with help from the CBP canine, 80 packages of drugs were found in all four of the vehicle's doors. The drugs consisted of more than 78 pounds of meth, estimated at nearly $235,000; more than six pounds of heroin, worth almost $160,000 as well as more than six pounds of fentanyl, worth $84,000.
Officers seized all the drugs and vehicles, while the suspects were arrested and then turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.