Truck Driver Arrested at US-Mexico Border with 3,000 Pounds of Meth Hidden in Carrot Shipment

A 44-year-old truck driver is currently in federal custody after attempting to cross the US-Mexico border at the Otay Mesa checkpoint in San Diego. The driver, whose identity remains undisclosed, was apprehended with approximately 3,000 pounds of methamphetamine concealed within a large shipment of carrots. The incident occurred on March 17, when the driver arrived at the border with a valid border crossing card and a shipping manifest indicating the transportation of carrots, as reported by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

Upon conducting a secondary inspection, authorities discovered suspicious packages hidden beneath the carrot bunches. A total of 574 packages were found, all of which tested positive for methamphetamine. The seized drugs, along with the truck, were confiscated, and the driver was handed over to the Department of Homeland Security for further investigation.

This seizure is part of Operation Apollo, an ongoing operation aimed at preventing the smuggling of fentanyl and other synthetic drugs into the United States through the border. While this incident may be the latest in a series of creative attempts to transport illegal substances across the southern border, it stands out as the most vitamin-rich, given the involvement of carrots.

Previous instances of drug smuggling disguised within produce include the discovery of over 400 pounds of cocaine hidden in a shipment of cucumbers in September, valued at over $5 million. In December, border agents uncovered nearly 2 tons of methamphetamine and cocaine, worth $10.4 million, concealed within vats of jalapeño paste. However, smugglers do not limit their contraband concealment to produce alone. In February 2022, a daring smuggler was arrested at the San Ysidro border crossing with 52 lizards and snakes hidden in his clothing.

In another incident, border agents intercepted around 27 pounds of crystal meth concealed within three child booster car seats during a checkpoint stop in Murrieta. While the father, a U.S. citizen, was arrested, the mother and children were released. Additionally, in February, the U.S. Justice Department apprehended 17 individuals involved in a scheme to smuggle fentanyl into the country concealed within fire extinguishers. One of the suspects, Toniel Baez-Duarte, was already in custody for his alleged involvement in a drug-related massacre in El Mirage.

Rosa Hernandez, the Director of the Otay Mesa Port of Entry, commended the agents for their vigilance in intercepting this shipment. She stated, “While facilitating lawful trade and travel, our officers steadfastly combat the trafficking of dangerous drugs at our borders.” The street value of the seized methamphetamine is estimated to be in the millions of dollars, while no estimate was provided for the value of the carrots.

CrimeDoor
Author: CrimeDoor

1 Response

  1. There doesn’t appear to be any errors or inaccuracies in the given statement. It provides a factual account of a 44-year-old truck driver being in federal custody after attempting to cross the US-Mexico border at the Otay Mesa checkpoint in San Diego. Without additional information or context, it is difficult to provide credible sources to support or refute this specific incident.

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