U.S. Customs and Border Protection find narcotics hidden in squash shipment

May 17, 2022

Smugglers will always try new, creative methods to smuggle narcotics, but our officers are always prepared for the unexpected.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) deputy director of field operations in San Diego, Anne Maricich, on over 550 pounds of narcotics found hidden in a shipment of squash.
  • Why It Matters: CBP officers at the Otay Mesa cargo crossing in San Diego found packages of 550+ pounds of methamphetamine and nearly 3 pounds of cocaine, amounting to a “street value” of more than $1 million — all hidden within boxes of squash.
  • How It Happened: A 25-year-old Mexican citizen driving a semi truck applied for entry into the U.S. at the Otay Mesa cargo facility, and CBP officials pulled him to the side for further inspection. After using an x-ray machine to screen the truck, a dog trained to detect narcotics alerted the officials to the driver’s pallets of squash, where they found and seized the packages of drugs.
  • This week, U.S. officials announced finding a large cross-border tunnel used for smuggling drugs; the tunnel links Tijuana, Mexico to a warehouse in San Diego, California. Click HERE to learn more and to view photos of the tunnel.
  • What To Watch For: We are expecting new numbers from CBP on encounters at the U.S. southern border during the month of April. Stay tuned to learn more from our monthly breakdown of CBP’s update.

CBP Officers “Squash” Attempt to Smuggle 550+ Pounds of Narcotics in Produce Shipment (U.S. Customs and Border Protection)

Big cross-border tunnel found linking Tijuana, San Diego (Associated Press)

by Jenna Lee,