Ttwo separate cocaine seizures for 14 kilos and 16 kilos of cocaine

Ttwo separate cocaine seizures for 14 kilos and 16 kilos of cocaine

On Sunday, September 9, 2007 at approximately 2:00 a.m. CBP Officers at the Gateway to the Americas Bridge referred a 2006 Chevrolet Corsa, driven by Bernabe Torres Hinojosa a 39-year-old Mexican citizen from Villas Las Cumbres, Estado de Mexico, Mexico for a secondary examination. During the examination, CBP officers detected discrepancies to the trunk area of the vehicle. CBP canine "Tonya" alerted to the odor of narcotics emanating from the same location of the car as well. Utilizing a non-intrusive imaging system, a scan of the car revealed anomalies within the trunk. Upon further examination of the trunk of the vehicle and a closer visual inspection, CBP officers discovered what appeared to be brick-like bundles within a compartment underneath the trunk. A total of 14 bundles containing 36 pounds of cocaine were removed. The cocaine has a street value of $1,152,000. CBP officers arrested the driver, Torres Hinojosa on federal drug violations and turned him over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Special Agents who investigated the seizure. The vehicle was also seized.

Less than twenty hours later at the very same bridge (Gateway to the Americas Bridge), CBP officers referred a 2006 Ford F-150 pickup truck being driven by a 35-year-old U.S. citizen from Houston, Texas for a secondary inspection. During said inspection, CBP Officers detected discrepancies to the undercarriage of the truck. CBP canine "Darko" alerted to the odor of narcotics emanating from the same location of the truck and specifically its spare tire. Utilizing a non-intrusive imaging system, a scan of the spare tire to the truck revealed anomalies within the tire. A total of 16 bundles containing 40 pounds of cocaine were extracted from the spare tire. The cocaine has an estimated value of $1, 280,000. CBP Officers arrested the driver on federal drug charges and turned him over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Special Agents who investigated the seizure. The 35-year-old Mexican citizen remains incarcerated and is awaiting his appearance before a federal magistrate. CBP Officers also seized the vehicle.

"CBP line officers always use keen, intuitive insight and observational skills in all that they do at our port of entry. I am proud of the work that they continue to do for us and for our country." said Gene Garza, CBP Port Director, Laredo.

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