CHICAGO-CBP’s International Mail Facility (IMF) in O’Hare processes millions of packages a year, however, many packages arriving from overseas contain illegal products. CBP agents work around the clock to ensure that incoming packages are safe, protecting our communities.
During fiscal year 2021, which ran from October 1, 2020 to September 30, 2021, CBP officers in Chicago seized 5,624 pounds of narcotics and $ 7.89 million in counterfeit goods.
Chicago’s CBP has seen a 10% increase in drug seizures this year. The main drug seized in Chicago this year was Tapentadol, a Schedule II opioid. This drug came in different doses and was mainly shipped from India, destined for addresses across the United States. CBP seized 2,399 shipments nationwide, an increase of 605% from last year. The second highest seizure in the Chicago MFI was Carisoprodol, a Schedule IV drug used to treat musculoskeletal pain, seizures of this drug increased 105% from last year. CBP seized 2,193 shipments of the drug. These shipments originated mainly from India to the United States. Carisoprodol has serious side effects, including drug addiction and seizures. Psilocybin Mushrooms finished third, with CBP seizing 439 shipments of these magic mushrooms, known for their hallucinogenic effects.
In addition, Chicago’s CBP intercepted 94 shipments of counterfeit goods, with Louis Vuitton handbags, Rolex watches and Gucci handbags being the main items seized. CBP plays a vital role in protecting the economy and the safety and health of consumers, legitimate businesses and the global supply chain.
There are several steps consumers can take to protect themselves while shopping online. Buy products only from reputable retailers and beware of third-party suppliers. Check out seller reviews and verify that there is a valid phone number and address for the seller, in case you have questions about a product’s legitimacy.
“Last year’s foreclosures show the great job our CBP officers are doing here in Chicago,” said LaFonda Sutton-Burke, director of field operations in Chicago. “More and more consumers are using e-commerce at unprecedented levels to purchase items. Buyers should be aware that criminals are prepared to steal your money by claiming that these fake and illegal items are real and / or safe. The buyer must be vigilant and informed.
In addition, CBP agriculture specialists in Chicago issued 2,486 mail interception notices. These seizures largely concerned food products, including meat products, fresh fruits and vegetables. Fresh fruits and vegetables present the obvious risk of carrying pests or diseases that could cause serious epidemics in agricultural crops in the United States. These pests and diseases would otherwise be separated from this continent by the oceans. Animal products such as cold meats can also be dangerous for our agriculture. Although these products have undergone a process of preservation for human consumption (for example, hardening to prevent the growth of bacteria), economically important livestock viruses may in fact be stored in this animal tissue and remain viable longer than in the environment. raw meat. The discarded products can then pave the way for the introduction of this disease into the United States.
CBP also seized 268 shipments containing more than $ 7.38 million in US currency and arrested 117 criminals who were leaving or arriving in O’Hare with outstanding warrants.
“Our highly trained officers are always on the alert for those fleeing the country to avoid prosecution or enter the United States with outstanding warrants,” said Shane Campbell, regional manager of the Port of Chicago. “With the tools at our disposal, we are very good at apprehending wanted criminals.”
The CBP National Fiscal Year numbers are also now available on our website on the application page: CBP Enforcement Statistics Fiscal Year 2022 | United States Customs and Border Protection. For more background, please refer to our press release located here.
CBP operates at ports of entry across the United States and routinely screens incoming international passengers and cargo for narcotics, weapons, and other regulated or prohibited products. CBP strives to serve as the premier law enforcement agency to improve the safety, security and prosperity of the nation through collaboration, innovation and integration.