EL PASO, Texas - An El Paso teenager tried to bring nearly 30 pounds of cocaine across the border Tuesday morning and was stopped at the port of entry, a U.S. Customs spokesman said.
The load is worth $958,400, officials said.
"CBP remains vigilant in its homeland security mission," said Hector Mancha, CBP El Paso Port Director. "Every day CBP personnel are finding drugs, apprehending wanted people, and stopping illegal immigration at area ports."
Officials say 19-year-old Erick Marquez was driving a 2004 Ford Explorer into the country Tuesday morning when officers and k-9 teams were doing a sweep of vehicles in the queue. A dog alerted its handlers that drugs may be present and further inspection revealed a hidden compartment in the bed of the truck.
CBP officers used a drill to penetrate the compartment and found a white powder that tested positive for cocaine, a statement said.
In total, 12 cocaine bundles full of cocaine were retrieved.
Marquez was turned over to Homeland Security investigators to face drug smuggling-related charges.