NOGALES, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Five women are now facing charges after attempting to smuggle more than 136 pounds of methamphetamine and heroin across the border in three separate incidents at the Port of Nogales, Dennis DeConcini Crossing over the weekend.
According to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection news release, officers at the Port of Nogales stopped three women from Anchorage, Alaska on Friday, July 21 when they attempted to cross the border into the U.S. A secondary search revealed two of the women had methamphetamine bundles hidden in their pelvic cavities, while the third woman had a package of heroin in her purse. The drugs weighed more than a pound and were worth an estimated combined value of $11,000.
In two separate incidents on Saturday, July 22 CBP officers found nearly 43 pounds of methamphetamine hidden in the spare tire of a Dodge SUV that had been pulled for secondary inspection, after a CBP canine alerted officers to the possibility of drugs. The driver of the SUV, a 47-year-old woman and a U.S. citizen was arrested. The drugs were worth an estimated $129,000.
Nearly an hour later, according to the CBP release, a woman and resident of Mexico was pulled for a secondary search of her Dodge sedan, after a CBP canine alerted to the possibility of drugs in the car. Officers searched the vehicle and found 92 pounds of methamphetamine hidden inside. It was worth an estimated $275,000.
CBP officers seized all the drugs and vehicles involved and the five women were arrested for narcotics smuggling and have been turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Homeland Security Investigations.