May 24, 2018 500 AM
TORNILLO, Texas – It seemed innocent at first glance. An older woman entering the U.S. from Mexico with nothing to declare. That all changed when U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Field Operation officers discovered almost 17 pounds of heroin in her vehicle. “This is not the first time we have stopped a senior smuggler and it probably won’t be the last,” said Donna Sifford, CBP port director at the Marcelino Serna port of entry. “Smugglers will try just about anything and this case is another example of why CBP must remain vigilant at all times.”
Shortly after 1 p.m. Monday a 2008 Ford Escape SUV being driven by a 75-year-old female U.S. citizen entered the port from neighboring Mexico and was selected for a secondary exam.
CBP officers using a non-intrusive x-ray inspection system located suspicious bundles in the center console. Additional bundles were found in her purse.
The contents of the seven packages tested positive for heroin. The combined weight of the contraband was 16.75 pounds.
CBP officers arrested the driver of the car. She was turned over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations special agents to face charges associated with the failed smuggling attempt.