U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Otay Mesa, Calif., border entry found 614 pounds of methamphetamine in a shipment of green onions.
The officers referred the driver of the tractor-trailer with the shipment to a secondary inspection on July 19, according to a news release. The shipment manifest listed the load as “mint leaves and other spices.”
An x-ray exam showed anomalies in the shipment and flagged it for a more intensive examination at the Otay Mesa commercial facility. A canine alerted officers to the contraband. When officers opened boxes of the green onions, they found packages hidden deeper in the pallets. Those packages of a “crystal-like substance” that field-tested positive for the properties of methamphetamine, according to the release.
In all, 40 packages weighing 614 pounds were found in the pallets of green onions, with a street value of $1.4 million.
The Customs and Border Protection seized the tractor-trailer and drugs, and turned the 31-year-old Mexican citizen who was driving the vehicle over to Homeland Security Investigations.