NOGALES – Throughout the day and into the night, border patrol agents work tirelessly around the clock to ensure narcotics and illegal immigrants do not enter into the U.S. Agents use advanced camera technology, K-9 units, and razor barriers at the four ports of entry in the city of Nogales.
The night brings the added element that many agents are all too familiar with: limited vision and more opportunities for criminal activity to occur in the shadows. During the night border patrol have their hands full monitoring the land surrounding the border. Agents regularly check surrounding side streets, sewers, alleyways, and the grass running between highway 19 and the border wall for suspicious activity.
They are on constant alert for individuals who are communicating with others on the side of the wall in the middle of the night.
Yet drug busts at the ports of entry are a regular occurrence for border patrol.
Just this week, at one of the four ports of entry, Mariposa Cargo Facility, authorities discovered a combined total of $153,00 worth of methamphetamine and fentanyl.
The discovered $153,000 worth of narcotics at the Port of Nogales came from two separate drug busts. The first from a 25-year-old woman who attempted to enter the U.S. with the drugs hidden in the rocker panels of the vehicle, and the second a woman at the Dennis DeConcini Crossing who had 1.5 pounds of fentanyl stuffed inside her jacket and underarms.
A source who works closely with border patrol, and wished to remain anonymous said, “Having a barrier and additional technology security would be beneficial. Absolutely, we need it. We aren’t just seeing Central Americans coming over illegally – we have Russians, Chinese, you name it. They are coming over the southern border.”
On January 26, Customs and Border Protection seized more than 250 pounds of fentanyl in a cucumber truck. This is the largest fentanyl seizure recorded at the entry of Nogales. The Drug Enforcement Agency said synthetic opioids and fentanyl are considered the most deadline because drug dealers are mixing the product into other drugs without the user’s knowledge.
For non-tolerant opioid user, one thousand micrograms has a very high likelihood to result in death. Fentanyl that has been cut for street drug purposes could be the 500 to 2,000 microgram range. In a regular size of heroin, there could be 100,000 micrograms of laced fentanyl, whereas in a traditional cocaine mixture 250,000 micrograms can found.
This math indicates two factors: users never really know how many grams are in street drugs, and it takes such a small amount of fentanyl to create a lethal dosage.
Marissa Martinez is a political contributor for Accuracy in Media. She is the former political director to Massachusetts Governor’s re-election campaign, alumni of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and political consultant to national PACs.