LOUISVILLE (KT) – U. S. Customs and Border Protection officers in Kentucky have been keeping busy seizing drugs and counterfeit jewelry smuggled into the country.
In one night at the Louisville office, officers seized two packages arriving from overseas locations that contained $270,000 worth of drugs headed to homes in the U.S. and abroad.
The first shipment intercepted was sent from Aruba. Officers inspected the item, manifested as canvas paintings, and found three paintings that were very rigid and unusually heavy. They made a small cut in the paintings and found a white powdery substance. It tested positive for cocaine and was seized. The shipment was headed to Madrid and had an estimated street value of $202,500.
The second shipment officers inspected arrived from Mexico and contained what appeared to be tablecloths. The weight of the tablecloths was very heavy, and a small cut was made into the fabric. They found a white powdery substance that tested positive for methamphetamine. The meth-soaked tablecloths were heading to a residence in Macon, Georgia, and had a street value of $67,500.
At the CBP office in Erlanger, located near the Greater Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, officers seized 9,377 pieces of jewelry being shipped from China to McAllen, Texas.
They inspected the shipment and found thousands of jewelry items bearing protected trademarks from Tiffany, Pandora, Cartier, Bvlgari, Dior, Gucci, Chanel, Rolex, Versace and Tous. Unprotected “generic” jewelry was comingled in the same box with protected jewelry that was undervalued on the invoice. Officers contacted CBP’s Centers of Excellence and Expertise, and an import specialist determined the jewelry was counterfeit. Had they been genuine, the items would have been worth more than $4.2 million. The declared value was $119.