Lots of drugs, some jewelry and furs and a celebrity rapper made the list of Top 10 unique seizures and arrests by the Buffalo Field Office of U.S. Customs and Border Protection in 2019. The seizures represent the array of threats encountered in passenger and commercial traffic.
“The CBP Officers within Buffalo Field Operations work tirelessly to protect our nation’s security,” said LaFonda Sutton-Burke, acting director of Buffalo Field Operations. “This list is just a small snapshot of the outstanding work they do day in and day out.”
#10: September 21, 2019 – CBP Thwarts Smuggling Attempt of Israeli Citizens
CBP Officers in Massena intercepted a male U.S. legal permanent resident who was traveling with a large quantity of female clothing and had an irregular travel route from Toronto to Brooklyn. Further investigation revealed man was involved in a smuggling attempt, where he facilitated the illegal entry of a male and female citizen of Israel.
#9: June 12, 2019 – CBP Seizes Fur Coats Valued at $76,000
CBP Officers in Champlain discovered 16 fur coats in a commercial shipment. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service was contacted and confirmed the fur garments were mink, fox, chinchilla and sable. The items were seized for violation of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species regulations.
#8: December 9, 2019 – CBP Seizes 5,700 Counterfeit Viagra Pills Valued at $404,000
CBP Officers in Rochester examined a commercial shipment manifested as a “plastic bottle.” Upon examination, CBP officers discovered 190 bottles, each labeled with the “Viagra” “Pfizer” wordmarks and indicated that they were “Made in the U.S.A.” The pills were seized for violation of merchandise bearing an American trademark.
#7: August 8, 2019 – CBP Seizes 274 Pounds of Marijuana
CBP Officers in Buffalo seized 274 pounds of marijuana in a commercial shipment of clothing destined to the New York City area. Officers discovered the marijuana in vacuum-sealed packages underneath blankets within boxes at the front of the trailer.
#6: October 28, 2019 – CBP Seizes Counterfeit Watch with an MSRP Value of Over $1M
CBP officers in Rochester seized one counterfeit Richard Mille Limited Edition Tourbillion Pablo MacDonough watch that had a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $1,059,860. The shipment was manifested as an “accessory” valued at $5. The shipment was seized for violation of merchandise infringing on an American trademark.
#5: December 8, 2019 – CBP Detains Violin Being Re-Sold at Higher Value
CBP officers in Champlain detained a violin that a U.S. citizen was attempting to import and sell via Ebay. The subject admitted to buying and importing violins from China for $49, then re-labeling them, claiming the origin to be Andalucia Espana and selling them at a much higher value.
#4: March 21, 2019 – CBP Seizes 78 Grams of Fentanyl
CBP Officers in Buffalo seized four shipments of the deadly drug fentanyl in commercial shipments that were manifested as “child toy.” Examination of the shipments revealed clay with nasal spray concealed inside which contained the fentanyl. The shipments were destined to various addresses within the U.S.
#3: November – December 2019 – CBP Seizes 7.8 Pounds of Steroids
CBP Officers in Buffalo seized 26 shipments containing steroids that weighed 7.8 pounds. The shipments were manifested as “bobble head toys” and after officers examined the toys, a white powder and yellow liquid were discovered inside each bobble head toy. The substances later tested positive for testosterone and steroids.
#2: June 21, 2019 – CBP Intercepts Marijuana and THC Inside False Bottom Chip Can
CBP Officers in Champlain discovered 59.5 grams of THC oil, 25.3 grams of THC spray, 21.5 grams marijuana and 13.6 grams of THC capsules concealed within a false bottom of a Pringles can. An 18-year-old U.S. citizen claimed ownership of the narcotics and he along with the drugs were turned over to New York State Police.
#1: April 17, 2019 – CBP Seizes Weapons and Drugs from Rapper Kodak Black
CBP Officers in Buffalo encountered Rapper Kodak Black and his entourage in two separate vehicles at the Lewiston Bridge border crossing. Search of the vehicles led to the discovery of four handguns, a loaded magazine cartridge and a personal use amount of marijuana. Kodak Black and his three co-travelers were all arrested for felony possession of a weapon under New York State Penal Law.