CBP Field Operations Seizes Marijuana From Avocado Shipment at Pharr International Bridge
PHARR, TX - This past week, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Office of Field Operations seized more than a half-million dollars in drugs—disguised in shipments of avocados. In two separate, unrelated incidents, officials seized roughly $587,000 worth of marijuana.
“Marijuana is being intercepted in large quantities in this region both at and in between the ports of entry,” said Port Director David Gonzalez, Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas Port of Entry, in a press release. “CBP officers at our port and throughout the Laredo Field Office are encountering and seizing colossal loads of marijuana.”
According to that press release, the first incident occurred on Tuesday February 19 when CBP officers assigned to the Pharr International Bridge cargo facility referred an empty tractor/trailer arriving from Mexico for further examination. A meticulous inspection—including the use of canine teams and non-intrusive imaging technology—revealed 343 packages weighing 818 pounds of marijuana hidden within the trailer.
Three days later, on February 22, a commercial shipment of fresh avocados arrived at the same cargo facility and after a thorough inspection utilizing all available tools and resources, CBP officers discovered 421 packages of alleged marijuana. This second inspection uncovered 2,119 pounds of marijuana worth approximately $424,000.
Homeland Security Investigations is currently investigating both cases.
AndNowUKnow will keep you in the loop on all things produce—including criminals attempting to infiltrate fresh produce.