Replica grenade among weapons, ammo seized en route to Mexico

Border Crime

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — A replica grenade was included in a large shipment of weapons and ammunition that was headed into Mexico before it was stopped at the Presidio Port of Entry on Thursday evening.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers said they selected a southbound 2016 Nissan Sentra for an intensive exam. It was during that exam that a detector dog alerted officers to the trunk area in the car.

A subsequent X-ray of the car revealed anomalies in the rear quarter panel of the Nissan that were later determined to be several rifle pieces encased in foam. Close to 400 rounds of ammunition, more than 40 ammunition magazines, rifle parks, and tactical gear were also found hidden throughout the car.

The oddest find in the search was a hand grenade wrapped in foil tape inside the driver side quarter panel. An explosive ordinance disposal technician secured the scene and eventually determined the hand grenade was a replica.

“(CBP officers) remain ever vigilant; in this instance, the Presidio team halted illegally transported weapons from entering Mexican communities, and they arrested the subject who now faces prosecution,” said El Paso Director of Field Operations Hector Mancha.

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The driver of the Nissan, identified as a male 44-year-old Mexican citizen, was arrested by CBP officers and turned over to Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents for federal prosecution.

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