$2.9 million of meth disguised as onions seized; Mexican trucker busted at border

Updated Feb 28, 2022
Meth Cbp

Federal authorities recently seized about 1,336 pounds of methamphetamine disguised as onions in Southern California.

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection Friday said the confiscated drugs are worth about $2.9 million.

On Feb. 20, border patrol officers inspected a tractor-trailer carrying a shipment said to be onions. An officer referred the 46-year-old driver and the items for a "more intense examination," where a canine team screened the tractor-trailer. A dog alerted to the shipment, which prompted officers to search it further. 

That's when authorities discovered almost 1,200 packages of methamphetamine shaped in "small globes with a white covering" that were mixed with actual sacks of onions, CBP said. 

The driver, who is a Mexican citizen, was arrested for the alleged drug smuggling attempt and turned over to federal agencies for additional disposition.

"This was not only a clever attempt to try and smuggle in narcotics, one I haven't seen before, but also time-consuming to wrap narcotics into these small packages, designed to look like onions," Sidney Aki, director of field operations in San Diego, said in a statement.  "While we have certainly seen narcotics in produce before, it's unusual for us to see this level of detail in the concealment."