U. S. Customs and Border Protection officers announced this week that on October 28 they discovered a ship was carrying more than wine and cheese aboard.
On October 28, CBP officers assigned to the Port of New York/Newark, Tactical Operations Division seized approximately 35 lbs. of cocaine from a black duffle bag inside a shipping container. The container arrived from Panama aboard the vessel MSC FEDERICA, and was manifested as containing 1,050 cartons of wine. CBP officers selected the container for examination during a routine tactical maritime operation.
The container originated in Australia and was discharged in Cristobal, Panama. It was then loaded on the vessel to be discharged in Port Newark, NJ. CBP officers were waiting at the dock when the vessel arrived at PNCT Terminal in Port Newark, NJ. CBP officers boarded the vessel and performed a search of the ship.
During the unloading of the containers from the vessel, CBP officers selected several containers for examination. CBP officers opened a container of wine and a black duffel bag was discovered concealed within the cartons. A CBP K-9 alerted to the presence of narcotics.
CBP officers opened the duffel bag, and discovered duct-taped brick shaped objects that tested positive for cocaine. A total of 13 bricks with a weight of 16.03 kilos (35.34 lbs.) of cocaine were discovered. All evidence was turned over to special agents from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
“The CBP officers assigned to the Port of New York/Newark take their responsibility of disrupting the flow of illicit narcotics to the United States very seriously,” said New York Field Operations Director, Robert E. Perez “This is just the latest example of CBP officers demonstrating vigilance, integrity and service to country.”
Press release from U.S. Customs and Border Protection