Courtesy Richard Pauza,
LAREDO, TEXAS – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agriculture specialists at the Laredo Port of Entry on Tuesday seized more than 1,700 pieces of prohibited fruit and other items from a single traveler.
The seizure occurred on April 23, 2012 during a routine examination at Colombia-Solidarity Bridge . A CBP officer referred a 2005 Ford Econoline van driven by a 46-year-old male resident of Lakeland , Fla. for a secondary examination. A CBP agriculture specialist conducted an intensive examination of the conveyance and discovered commercial quantities of prohibited fruits, including: 1,550 mangos, 100 guavas, 39 mamey sapotes, 27 passion fruits, two kilograms of hog plums, half a kilogram of pork skins and half a kilogram of red rice. A CBP agriculture specialist issued a $1,000 penalty for failure to declare prohibited agricultural products and seized the prohibited agricultural items.
A CBP agriculture specialist also discovered fruit fly larvae in the mangos, guavas and mamey sapotes. A U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) plant pathologist positively identified the larvae as Anastrepha sp.
“Our frontline agriculture specialists did a fantastic job and seized a commercial amount of prohibited fruit coming through the passenger vehicles lanes,” said Sidney Aki, CBP Port Director, Laredo . “The discovery of fruit fly larvae underscores the importance of CBP’s agricultural mission and protecting American agriculture from pests not known to exist in the U.S. ”