Customs and Border Patrol officers could have confiscated drugs at the World Trade Bridge in Laredo, TX, as it crossed from Mexico into the United States.
Instead, the officers reportedly used undercover agents who posed as truck drivers to deliver the load of jalapenos and marijuana to a Charlotte, NC, warehouse. From there, officers watched pallets of the drugs and peppers being unloaded and moved into white cargo vans, the Charlotte Observer reported.
Several hours later, the van and another vehicle left the warehouse, where they soon were pulled over by law enforcement officers in police cruisers.
Inside the van, officers found 372 bundles of marijuana weighing 3,200 pounds, according to the Charlotte Observer.
Six individuals were charged with possession with intent to distribute 1,000 or more kilograms of marijuana and conspiracy with intent to distribute marijuana. Those charged were Joel Maucello Hernandez, 32; Oscar Antonio Baez, 33; Guadalupe Pina Flores, 48; Gonzalo Hernandez, 36, Joel Manuel De La Cruz, 37; and Ramiro Ortiz, 33.
Each defendant has reportedly made an initial appearance in federal court in Charlotte.
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