Over $10 million in meth, cocaine hidden in jalapeno paste seized

CBP officer take drugs from barrel of jalapeno paste
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol

Customs and Border Protection officers at the Otay Mesa Cargo Facility in San diego seized over $10 million worth of hard narcotics hidden in a shipment of jalapeno paste last week.

Customs and Border Patrol officers remove drugs from barrels of jalapeno pasteCustoms and Border Patrol officers remove drugs from barrels of jalapeno pasteU.S. Customs and Border PatrolA statement from the CBP said on Dec. 13 officers encountered a 28-year-old male driving a tractor-trailer with a shipment manifested as jalapeno paste. The driver, who CBP said is a valid border crossing card holder, was referred for further examination by CBP officers along with the tractor-trailer and its cargo..

In the secondary inspection area, a CBP K-9 unit screened the shipment and alerted officers to examine the trailer more closely.

Upon further examination, CBP officers discovered and extracted a total of 349 suspicious packages from vats of jalapeno paste, according to the CBP. The contents of the packages were tested and identified as methamphetamine with a weight of 3,161.43 pounds and cocaine with a weight of 522.50 pounds.

CBP officers seized the narcotics and tractor-trailer while the driver was turned over to Homeland Security Investigations for further processing. The estimated street value of the narcotics is $10,430,000.

In November, the San Diego Field Office, conducting security operations at California’s land ports of entry, seized a total of more than 14,000 pounds of narcotics.