Over 300 lbs of marijuana hidden in van ceiling seized at New Mexico border entry

Over 300 lbs of marijuana hidden in van ceiling seized at New Mexico border entry
Hidden Marijuana (Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection)
Hidden Marijuana (Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection)
Hidden Marijuana (Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection)
Hidden Marijuana (Source: U.S. Customs and Border Protection)

SANTA TERESA, NM (KWES) - U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized 323.5 pounds of marijuana that were hidden in the ceiling of a van on Tuesday at the Santa Teresa, New Mexico port of entry.

The drug bust happened around 11 a.m. when a 1993 Chevy Astro attempted to cross the border.

A CBP officer chose to conduct a secondary examination of the van.

The officer used a "Buster" density meter to check the van and found that the readings indicated hidden contraband in the ceiling.

A CBP drug sniffing dog also alerted officers that there was something in the ceiling.

Officers found 299 bundles of marijuana with an estimated street value of $258,000.

The driver of the van, Ramon Antonio Rios Torres, 44, of El Paso, Texas was arrested.

Ray Provencio, CBP Santa Teresa Port Director, said "Smugglers will attempt to utilize any and all parts of a vehicle to hide their drug loads."

Copyright 2016 KWES. All rights reserved.