Texas prison officials reported the discovery of nearly $18 million dollars worth of cocaine in a shipment of bananas being donated to a state penitentiary.
The Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) contacted U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) after they found 54o bundles of cocaine hidden in a shipment of bananas that had been donated to a prison unit in Brazoria County.
In a tweet on Friday, TDCJ officials wrote, “2 sergeants from the Scott Unit alerted Customs when they found a white powder in a donated box of bananas in Freeport this morning.”
2 sergeants from the Scott Unit alerted Customs when they found a white powder in a donated box of bananas in Freeport this morning.
The substance was tested. Cocaine! 540 bundles, $17,820,000 worth, were on the shipment!
The DEA and Customs are continuing their investigation. pic.twitter.com/O3yRpZBClN
— TDCJ (@TDCJ) September 21, 2018
The discovery of the drugs came when two prison sergeants from the Scott Unit in Angleton, Texas, traveled to the Ports of America in Freeport to pick up a donated shipment of 45 boxes of bananas. One of the sergeants became suspicious when one of the boxed felt different from the others when he was loading them. They opened the box and rummaged through the bananas until they found the first of 540 bundles of white powder, the Houston Chronicle reported. CBP officials arrived on the scene and identified the powder as cocaine.
Officials estimated the value of the 540 cocaine bundles at $17,830,000. The TDCJ did not disclose who “donated” the shipment containing the illicit drugs.
State prison officials seized the shipment and turned the cocaine over to CBP and the DEA for criminal investigation.