Border Patrol Seize $60,000 Worth Of Fentanyl Hidden Inside Burritos
Nearly $60,000 worth of fentanyl hidden inside burritos was sniffed out by a Border Patrol canine in Arizona.
According to a US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) press release, officers were alerted by the dog to a 2007 Blue Chevrolet Tahoe at the Yuma Sector Patrol station in Yuma at around 3pm on Tuesday, March 30.
The male driver of the vehicle was then referred to the secondary inspection area of the Highway 78 immigration checkpoint, where the canine caught the scent of a black backpack inside the car.
CBP agents proceeded to search the bag, finding a number of breakfast burritos which were stuffed with an innutritious combo of cheese and fentanyl pills. Totalling just more than 5lb, the fentanyl was estimated to have a street value of nearly $60,000.
The driver, a 37-year-old ‘lawfully admitted permanent resident’, was then arrested and the drugs were seized and processed. According to Fox News, it comes after an ‘increase in the seizure of drugs in the Yuma Area of Responsibility of late.’
It’s one case among many involving smuggling drugs inside food items – or what appears to be food. For example, earlier this month CBP agents seized more than $1.3 million worth of methamphetamine at a checkpoint in Otay Mesa, California, just north of the US-Mexico border. It was hidden inside packages wrapped in photos of spinach.
Rosa Hernandez, director of the Otay Mesa Port of Entry, said: ‘CBP officers continue to expedite legitimate trade and travel without letting their guard down when it comes to protecting our country… we are aggressively combating the flow of illegal narcotics and preventing them to reach our communities.’
In February, $2.82 million worth of cocaine was also seized by CBP agents in Cincinnati, Ohio. The shipment contained a large amount of corn flakes which were coated in the drug.
Cincinnati Port Director Richard Gillespie earlier said: ‘The men and women at the Port of Cincinnati are committed to stopping the flow of dangerous drugs, and they continue to use their training, intuition, and strategic skills to prevent these kinds of illegitimate shipments from reaching the public.’
Meanwhile on this side of the pond in January, police discovered £76 million worth of cocaine inside a banana shipment heading to Antwerp, Belgium, from Southampton.
Home Secretary Priti Patel said in an earlier statement: ‘This was drug smuggling on an industrial scale so I’m delighted that Border Force officers have prevented such a large quantity of dangerous goods from reaching our streets.’
She added: ‘Drugs devastate communities, line the pockets of serious criminals, and are a serious driver of the violence which ruin young lives right across the country.’
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US Customs and Border Protection