LOUISVILLE, Ky. (KT) – Work that involved two federal agencies led to U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers in Louisville finding 243 pounds of methamphetamine, worth over $2 million, hidden in rugs on Tuesday.
A U.S. Fish and Wildlife officer identified an anomaly during one of their examinations. This shipment, which was manifested as ‘silica gel’, had originated from Mexico and was ultimately destined to Hong Kong.
FWS notified CBP officers, who then conducted a more intrusive examination which led to the discovery of a white crystal substance concealed within foil bags. Officers tested the powder, which tested positive for the presence of methamphetamine, so the shipment, which had a street value of more than $2.16 million, was seized.
“This is a huge seizure that began with FWS and ended with our officers finding these packets of methamphetamine,” said Thomas Mahn, Port Director-Louisville. “The men and women at the Port of Louisville are committed to stopping the flow of dangerous drugs, and they continue to use their training, intuition, and strategic skills to prevent these kinds of illegitimate shipments from reaching the public.”
The opioid crisis has gained much attention over the past few years, but overdose deaths from methamphetamine and cocaine have been increasing at an alarming pace since 2009. According to preliminary data provided by the U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2020 overdose death rates from stimulants have increased by 18% over 2019.
Methamphetamine is one of the most commonly misused stimulants in the world, the CBP said, and is the drug that most contributes to violent crime in the United States. According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, approximately 1.6 million people reported using methamphetamine in 2016. It is highly addictive, and its abuse can lead to death from stroke, heart attack, or multiple organ failures caused by overheating.