OTAY MESA, Calif. — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Otay Mesa port of entry in California recently intercepted 3,520,000 fentanyl pills — worth an estimated street value of $21,120,000 — concealed within a shipment of green beans.
The bust began at approximately 7:21 p.m. on Monday, April 17, when CBP officers encountered a 48-year-old male driver of a tractor-trailer loaded with produce, according to a news release.
During initial inspection, a CBP officer referred the driver and cargo load for an intensive agriculture inspection.
A non-intrusive inspection was utilized to conduct a full scan of the tractor-trailer. After examination, irregularities were observed, and CBP officers requested a CBP human/narcotic detector dog, who alerted CBP officers to the presence of narcotics.
CBP officers discovered and extracted a total of 308 packages concealed within the shipment of green beans. The narcotics were tested and identified as fentanyl pills with a total weight of 776.03 pounds.
CBP officers discovered and extracted a total of 308 packages concealed within the shipment of green beans.
“CBP recognizes our officers’ exceptional performance and applaud their continued efforts to protect and serve our communities,” said Rosa Hernandez, Port Director for the Otay Mesa Cargo Facility. “This seizure provides insight and displays how our officers work together in collaboration to keep this dangerous drug off the streets.”
The driver was detained for the alleged narcotic smuggling attempt and was turned over to the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
CBP officers seized the tractor, trailer and narcotics.
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