U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers seized nearly 200 pounds of liquid methamphetamine concealed in the fuel tank of a tractor, the agency announced.
Border agents in Otay Mesa, California, say a 25-year-old male driving a tractor-trailer arrived at a CBP commercial facility seeking entry on Aug. 7. The officer who first encountered the man flagged the vehicle for a deeper inspection.
“CBP officers conducted a thorough hands-on inspection. While inspecting the fuel tank of the tractor CBP officers noticed a liquid substance in the tank begin to crystalize. The substance was tested by CBP officers and identified as liquid methamphetamine,” the CBP said in a statement.
“CBP officers removed the liquid methamphetamine from the fuel tank of the tractor. The narcotics were placed in six five-gallon buckets with a total weight of 195.33 pounds. The estimated street value of the drug shipment is $221,500,” the statement continued.
Officers confiscated the narcotics, tractor and the attached trailer, while the driver was transferred to the Department of Homeland Security.
“This unusual concealment method shows that drug traffickers will try anything to get their product across our borders,” Rosa Hernandez, Port Director for the Otay Mesa port of entry, said in a statement. “I am proud of the remarkable job our Otay Mesa CBP officers do every day, because even in this extreme weather, they do not lower their guard when it comes to protecting our nation’s borders.”
The reported incident comes as border agents seized $6 million worth of narcotics over the course of 72 hours in late August.
In that instance, Border Patrol agents seized 186 pounds of liquid meth, 51 pounds of methamphetamine, two firearms and arrested two gang members.
Drug and human trafficking remains a major issue at the U.S.-Mexico border, which has seen a massive surge in illegal crossings since President Biden took office in 2021.
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