On Monday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Cincinnati noticed something strange about a shipment of food products transiting through a local express consignment facility. After a closer look, they discovered about two pounds of cocaine with a street value of approximately US $45,000.
The package was manifested as “food stuff” and contained bars of soaps and multiple types of food products, including two bags labeled as “soya chunks” containing what appeared to be a type of nugget. After opening one of the nuggets, officers found small pellets of a white, powdery substance. Testing confirmed the powder was cocaine.
“Smugglers can be creative in their attempts to get narcotics past our frontline,” said Cincinnati Port Director Richard Gillespie. “Our officers are exceptional at identifying shipments that warrant additional scrutiny, and now, more than ever, their skills are critical in securing our nation’s borders.”
The shipment originated from Trinidad and Tobago, a region vulnerable to drug trafficking and a transit point for large quantities of cocaine moving north from South America. The ultimate destination was a private residence in Ontario, Canada.
Cocaine is a dangerous and highly addictive stimulant. Abuse of this drug can lead to paranoia, exhaustion, heart conditions, convulsions, stroke, and death. Cocaine is classified as Schedule II stimulant under the Controlled Substances Act.