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CBP officers foil cocaine smuggling attempt; trusted “low-risk” traveler arrested


EL PASO, Texas -- A 71-year-old Mexican citizen was arrested for attempting to smuggle about 20 pounds of cocaine through a specially designated lane for low-risk travelers.

The seizure happened at the Secure Electronic Network for Travelers Rapid Inspection (SENTRI) lane at the Stanton Street dedicated commuter lane on Monday around 11:30 a.m.

“The use of SENTRI is a privilege but participants are not exempt from inspection,” said CBP El Paso Port Director Ray Provencio. “Although the program allows expedited screening for pre-approved, low risk travelers, our officers maintain their vigilance and trust but verify that users are not violating the law and the rules of the SENTRI program.”  

The drug was found hidden within the dashboard area of a minivan, according to CBP.

The Mexican national was turned over to the El Paso Sheriff's Office to face charges.

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