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CBP stops machine guns, ammunition, headed into Mexico from California
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers performing southbound inspections at the U.S. Port of Entry at Andrade, Calif., on Saturday stopped a driver with two machine guns strapped to the engine of his pickup.
“It is unusual to find machine guns, so obviously it is an important seizure,” said Jackie Dizdul, of CBP Public Affairs. “We are extremely proud of our officers for keeping these dangerous weapons off the streets.”
In addition to the two machine guns, CBP officers also found and seized 680 rounds of ammunition hidden on top of the spare tire, underneath the pickup's bed.
Dizdul said that at about 10:30 a.m. July 10, CBP officers inspecting vehicles leaving the United States heading into Mexico stopped a 20-year-old male U.S. citizen who is a resident of El Mirage, Ariz., driving a white Ford F-150 pickup.
A CBP officer referred the car and driver for a more intensive inspection, Dizdul said, after noticing the driver displaying signs of nervousness.
Dizdul said when CBP officers popped the pickup's hood, they discovered the two machine guns and two green ammunition containers strapped to the vehicle's engine with plastic zip ties. Upon further investigation, officers also found the ammunition.
In total, CBP officers found an MG-42 7.92 universal machine gun, a SA43 7.62 X54R MM machine gun, 680 rounds of ammunition, including 280 7.62 caliber rounds, 100 8mm caliber rounds, 100 22LR caliber rounds, and 200.233 caliber rounds, and two boxes of machine gun ammunition links, used to fashion an automated belt for the machine gun ammunition.
Dizdul said CBP seized the vehicle, weapons and ammunition, and turned custody of the driver over to agents with Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Border Enforcement Security Task Force. The driver will face criminal charges.
James Gilbert can be reached at email@example.com or 539-6854.