U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers, agriculture specialists, and agriculture canine teams at Laredo Port of Entry have had their work cut out for them over the past month. They encountered multiple agriculture law violations and issued more than $20,100 in penalties.
The first interception occurred on August 14th when a car with a final destination of North Carolina arrived at the Juarez-Lincoln Bridge and was randomly selected for inspection by CBP agriculture specialists. A negative declaration for fruits, meats, vegetables, plants or any prohibited ag product was received. The agriculture canine team alerted to the presence of a trained order originating from the purse. In it, 17 live plants and three peppers for propagation were found, undeclared within the purse. Agriculture specialists issued the driver a $300 penalty for attempting to import and failing to declare the prohibited agriculture products.
Later in the evening on Aug. 14, another vehicle made entry at the Juarez-Lincoln Bridge and was randomly selected for an agriculture inspection. A negative declaration for fruits, meats, vegetables, plants and any other prohibited product was received. Upon inspection of the luggage and vehicle, the agriculture canine team discovered 11 kilograms of pork and four dragon fruits were discovered undeclared within luggage and vehicle. The penalty was then levied at $1,000 because the prohibited items were part of a commercial importation.
For the month of August 2021, CBP agriculture specialists at Laredo Port of Entry intercepted over 4,350 prohibited agricultural items and levied 47 penalties totaling over $20,000. Attempting to bring in prohibited agricultural items could lead to traveler delays and may result in penalties ranging from $300 to $1,000.
Photo source: U.S. Customs a nd Border Protection