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Old 11 June 2010, 05:25 AM
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Mexico US Border Patrol pictures of the most bizarre attempts at smuggling people and drugs

In 2006, an image made headlines showing a man sewn into a car seat in an attempt to illegally cross the Mexican/U.S. border. Now U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) have shared images of some of their most bizarre busts in the war on the smuggling of people and drugs into America.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/pict...and-drugs.html
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Old 11 June 2010, 06:07 AM
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Many years ago I was at Gatwick Airport and the customs had set up a similar display of photographs featuring failed drug smuggling attempts.

I suppose the message was "however clever you think you are, we're cleverer."
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Old 11 June 2010, 12:02 PM
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Cocaine Jesus is still my favorite bust.
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Old 11 June 2010, 01:30 PM
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It's amazing where they manage to put people in, but some of the drug hideaways were not that bizarre, were they?

I mean, marijuana under the seat of a motorcycle? That compartment is meant to have things stored in. Even if the owner in this case stowed away something that is illegal, how is that bizarre?

Don Enrico
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Old 11 June 2010, 02:01 PM
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The Checkpoint Charlie museum in Berlin shows some of the methods that were used to smuggle people into West Berlin back in the days of the Berlin Wall. One of them was a man sewn into a car seat. I think in that case, they even had someone sitting on the seat.
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Old 11 June 2010, 04:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Enrico View Post
I mean, marijuana under the seat of a motorcycle? That compartment is meant to have things stored in. Even if the owner in this case stowed away something that is illegal, how is that bizarre?
I find it bizarre that someone thought it was an effective place to try to hide something. As you say, that compartment is meant to store items. That makes it a very bad place to put anything that you really don't want found.
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Old 11 June 2010, 04:37 PM
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Yes, those are real. And they all seem to be from San Ysidro (the world's largest and busiest border crossing), except for one from a BP checkpoint in California. Why? Simple odds. We get about 6000 vehicles and 2000 pedestrians a day in Douglas, more or less. Skid Row gets four or five times as much traffic. Plus, because of the way things are set up, it's easier over here for most illegals and large quantities to cross through the desert. We don't often get people hidden in vehicles, but it happens.

Just imagine how wonderful and advanced Mexico would be if the people there put that kind of ingenuity into legal pursuits (well, that, and if their government wasn't corrupt, and wealth was redistributed, and the drug cartels were gone, and....)
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Old 11 June 2010, 04:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Enrico View Post
It's amazing where they manage to put people in, but some of the drug hideaways were not that bizarre, were they?
Yeah I thought some of those were pretty common ways to try to smuggle drugs. The garden hose was clever, though, as was the concrete birdbath.

The last one of the van seemed only to be unusual because the women smuggling had two children in the van. Is that really that shocking?
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Old 11 June 2010, 05:31 PM
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I'm not sure why the guy taping packets of drugs to his body was considered "bizarre". That would seem common.
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Old 11 June 2010, 05:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cervus View Post
I'm not sure why the guy taping packets of drugs to his body was considered "bizarre". That would seem common.
Maybe the clothes he was photographed in were all he was wearing while trying to cross the border?
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Old 11 June 2010, 07:39 PM
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Some of the people-smuggling pics remind me of Agent 13 from Get Smart.
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Old 11 June 2010, 09:36 PM
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This may be one for DAnnino, but how do border agents find out that someone's hidden behind the dashboard of a car? Does a service animal alert them to something odd back there, or other visual cues? I mean, they can't just rip the interior panels out of someone's vehicle without a pretty good suspicion, right?

-RB
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  #13  
Old 11 June 2010, 11:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eddylizard View Post
I suppose the message was "however clever you think you are, we're cleverer."
But I suspect that only a small fraction of contraband and stowaways are detected. So you don't really need to be clever, you just need to not be unlucky.
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Old 12 June 2010, 01:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadsterboy View Post
This may be one for DAnnino, but how do border agents find out that someone's hidden behind the dashboard of a car? Does a service animal alert them to something odd back there, or other visual cues? I mean, they can't just rip the interior panels out of someone's vehicle without a pretty good suspicion, right?
I'm assuming they use dogs, but I wonder if the same dog is taught to sniff out drugs as well as people, or if they have multiple dogs that each specialize in finding something.
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Old 12 June 2010, 02:16 AM
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Originally Posted by jimmy101_again View Post
But I suspect that only a small fraction of contraband and stowaways are detected. So you don't really need to be clever, you just need to not be unlucky.
The possibility that I can possibly outwit customs officers and be cleverer than them was not my point - they put up a display to frighten potential drug smugglers into thinking they are all knowing and all seeing. Not all drug smugglers are eligible to join MENSA.
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  #16  
Old 13 June 2010, 07:08 PM
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I would expect that the Customs folks use density meters, particle detectors and other high tech sensors in the normal course of a car passing by them.

From Canada to the US, there are these big Yellow Pillars that a car passes through before we meet the border agent. I once expected the vehicle in front of me to move up farther than they did, and ended up with my front end squalry between those two pillars. The agent actually came over to me, and suggested i either back up or turn my engine off, otherwise they would set some alarm off and the van would be dismanteled. He was really cool about it.

(and the van didn't get dismanteled)
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  #17  
Old 14 June 2010, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadsterboy View Post
This may be one for DAnnino, but how do border agents find out that someone's hidden behind the dashboard of a car? Does a service animal alert them to something odd back there, or other visual cues? I mean, they can't just rip the interior panels out of someone's vehicle without a pretty good suspicion, right?

-RB
Let's just say when you look under the dash, and see a face staring back at you would be a good indicator.

I can't and won't discuss "sources and methods" that we use for finding things, but let's just use common sense. I don't have a tricorder or multiphasic sensors.

[war story] We don't have many attempts like that to smuggle people (usually, we have them attempt to blend in), but several years ago, a buddy referred a vehicle because the driver was very nervous. I opened the back door, and there's a blanket covered lump. My first thought was, "Boy, they're making this easy for me. Just covering the dope with a blanket. Idiots!" I then pulled the blanket away, and instead of bundles of marijuana, there's a face staring back at me. It was an old lady, and she stared at me wide-eyed for a second before slamming her eyelids shut ("If I close my eyes, he'll go away!" ), and apparently I yelled at her not to move or I'd blow her (censored)(unprintable) head off. I also found another woman under a blanket between the second and third rows of seats. It is very stunning to find someone looking back at you. [/war story]
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