A shipment of jalapeños from Mexico to the U.S. proved to be carrying more than just a spicy kick when Border Patrol agents found nearly 4 tons of marijuana hidden in the cargo.
The discovery was made on Thursday, Aug. 15, when a truck driver was flagged for a secondary inspection at the Otay Mesa border crossing in California.
Acting Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Mark Morgan said on Twitter that he is “proud of our CBP officers in Otay Mesa!”
Very proud of our CBP officers in Otay Mesa! Last night they seized 7,560 pounds of marijuana in a shipment of jalapeno peppers and on Tuesday they seized another 10,642 pounds of marijuana in a shipment of plastic auto parts. Well done! pic.twitter.com/4EnoDGXWl3
— Acting Commissioner Mark Morgan (@CBPMarkMorgan) August 17, 2019
During the inspection, a K-9 team alerted officers to the peppers, according to a press release from U.S. CBP.
The federal agency didn’t say why the driver, a 37-year-old male Mexican citizen, was initially flagged for a secondary inspection.
Inside the pallets of peppers officers discovered over 300 green packages that field-tested for marijuana. Officials estimate the seized drugs are worth $2.3 million.
“I am proud of the officers for seizing this significant marijuana load,” said Otay Mesa Port Director Rosa Hernandez in the press release.
“Not only did they prevent the drugs from reaching our community, but they also prevented millions of dollars of potential profit from making it into the hands of a transnational criminal organization.”
There was no word on potential criminal charges against the truck’s driver.
Thursday’s bust follows a seizure of more than 10,000 pounds of marijuana in a shipment of plastic auto parts that occurred on Aug. 13 at the same cargo facility.
On Monday, a CBP K9 at the Rainbow Bridge in Buffalo alerted to spare tires in a cargo van, leading CBP officers to discover 48lbs of marijuana hidden inside. https://t.co/nkfJYybRTf pic.twitter.com/7BhJ5NVQxW
— CBP (@CBP) August 17, 2019