San Juan, Puerto Rice - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) seized 181 pounds (82 kilos) of cocaine Monday within six (6) backpacks found on board the cargo vessel M/V Molly Schulte calling the port of San Juan from Caucedo, Dominican Republic.   The estimated value of the seized cocaine is $ 2.2 million.

A cocaine brick is visible inside a backpack.

“Smugglers use very creative means to conceal their illicit drug loads into the international supply chain”, stated Roberto Vaquero, Assistant Director of Field Operations for Border Security in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.  “Our officers’ expertise, along with the utilization of all available tools, resulted in the detection of these narcotics.  Our communities can feel safer knowing that the men and women of CBP are securing their borders.”

On Feb. 1, a CBP Contraband Enforcement Team boarded the vessel for a routine inspection.   Inside the vessel, a CBP K9 alerted for a familiar smell within six backpacks near the cargo deck.

CBP Officers inspected the contents of the backpacks finding bricks, which later field tested positive to the properties of cocaine.

CBP’s mission is to safeguard America’s borders thereby protecting the public from dangerous people and materials while enhancing the Nation’s global economic competitiveness by enabling legitimate trade and travel.