CALEXICO, Calif. — Border officials seized millions of dollars worth of cocaine in a single bust at the Calexico Port of Entry east of San Diego County on Thursday.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the crossing say they found the 480 pounds of cocaine — valued at a whopping $7.6 million — in an extra fuel tank in the bed of a Ford pickup truck.
“Inconsistencies with the driver’s story” made officers suspicious when he pulled up to the entry, officials say, and they told the 46-year-old driver to pull to the side for further inspection.
“As the truck drove through the x-ray imaging system, the operator identified anomalies in the bed area of the vehicle,” CBP explained. “CBP officers searched the vehicle and discovered 182 packages of cocaine weighing 480 pounds hidden in a special compartment inside the non-factory auxiliary fuel tank of the vehicle.”
Officers arrested the man, who is a U.S. citizen, and turned him over to Homeland Security Investigations. CBP officers seized the vehicle and the drugs.
The man was eventually booked into GEO Federal Detention Facility in El Centro on suspicion of trying to smuggle the drugs into the country. He will faces the charges in court at a later date.