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October 26, 09

NEWS / CBP Officers at Hidalgo/Reynosa Bridge Find Cocaine Hidden in Laptop Bag

Hidalgo, Texas – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers working at the Hidalgo/Reynosa International Bridge seized approximately 4.5 pounds of cocaine with an estimated street value of $147,000.

On October 21, CBP officers working at the Hidalgo/Reynosa International Bridge came in contact with a northbound pedestrian. While at primary, officers detected discrepancies to the traveler’s briefcase and a laptop computer bag. After the initial inspection, the male traveler and bags were referred to secondary for an intensive examination. In secondary “Laika,” a narcotic detector dog, sniffed out narcotic odors emanating from the laptop computer bag. A non-intrusive image scan revealed anomalies within the computer bag.

While conducting an intensive examination of the bag, officers removed one cocaine package that was found hidden within the laptop computer bag. The traveler, identified as Ricardo Daniel Rodriguez, a U.S. citizen, age 19 from Austin, Texas was arrested on federal drug charges. After his arrest, Rodriguez was transferred to the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement special agents who continue to investigate this failed smuggling attempt. Pending appearance before a U.S. Magistrate, Rodriguez remains incarcerated.

Hector A. Mancha, CBP port director, Hidalgo/Pharr said, “This is the first instance where this port has found cocaine hidden in a laptop computer bag.” Mancha further said, “I commend our cadre of CBP officers for their outstanding enforcement work.”




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