PHILADELPHIA, P.A. (WWTI) — U.S. Customs and Border Protection confirmed on April 26 that officers in New York, Philadelphia and Cincinnati successfully interrupted a new trend in cocaine concealment in March.
According to CBP, officers in these three locations stopped four shipments from Jamaica of cocaine secreted inside the insulated walls of thermos cups. Each intercepted shipment consisted of four souvenir cups that were packed with tea bags, bagged spices or vaporizing ointment.
Approximately 250 to 260 grams of cocaine, or over 2.5 pounds of cocaine was uncovered in each shipment which had an approximate street value of $70,000.
A timeline of this investigation is detailed below:
CBP officers in Philadelphia inspected the first shipment of four thermos insulated cups from Montego Bay. Inside the shipment, officers speculated that each insulated cup was “unusually heavy.
This resulted in officers drilling into the sidewall of each cup finding a white powdery substance that field-tested positive for cocaine. This shipment was destined for Philadelphia.
Officers learned that three similar shipments from Jamacia were in transit through express consignment processing centers in Cincinnati, New York and again in Philadelphia. These were flagged in each location.
The second shipment of cocaine was intercepted by Cincinnati CBP officers. This shipment included cocaine similarly concealed inside the insulated walls of four thermos cups.
This shipment was destined for a different address in Philadelphia.
CBP officers intercepted the third cocaine shipment in the Bronx in New York State. This was through assistance provided by narcotics detector dog Kincsem. The parcel was destined to an address in the Bronx.
Additionally, CBP officers in Philadelphia discovered 18 pounds of cocaine inside the cargo hold of a passenger flight that also arrived from Montego Bay.
The final of the four shipments was uncovered in Philadelphia by CBP officers. This shipment was destined to an address in Stamford, Connecticut.
“These cocaine seizures perfectly illustrate how Customs and Border Protection officers across the country routinely collaborate to intercept shipments of dangerous drugs and force traffickers to work hard to change concealment tactics and supply routes,” CBP’s Area Port Director in Philadelphia Joseph Martella said in a press release. “Our communities expect us to stand a vigilant watch along our nation’s borders against the repeated smuggling attempts by drug trafficking organizations, and CBP vows to do just that.”