BUFFALO, N. Y. — U. S. border agents at the Peace Bridge have seized $1 million in ecstasy hidden among bushels of blueberries in a transport truck bound for Florida.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers searched the truck Friday after it crossed the bridge to Buffalo.
During the course of an inspection, officers used gamma-ray technology to generate a high-resolution image of the truck’s contents, which revealed an anomaly in the roof of the truck’s sleeper cab.
Ten vacuum-sealed bags filled with 48,400 ecstasy tablets were found in the cab. “CBP’s non-intrusive inspection technology assists our officers in preventing terrorist weapons and contraband, including illegal drugs from entering our country while facilitating the orderly flow of legitimate trade and travel,” said James Engleman, CBP director of field operations in Buffalo.
Charged with importation and possession with the intent to distribute a controlled substance is Leon Johnson, 41, of Brampton. From the St. Catherine’s Standard
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The former president of Continental Express Inc. has been found guilty of defrauding the trucking company and its owner out of $872,000.
A federal jury acquitted Kelly Wooldridge of credit card fraud Thursday but convicted him of mail fraud conspiracy after hearing testimony for over a week, including descriptions from his co-defendant Todd Tiefel, the company’s former chief financial officer.
U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright will set a sentencing date after receiving a pre-sentence report in about two months. Wooldridge faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
Continental Express was based in Little Rock but was sold in December to Celadon Trucking Services Inc. of Indianapolis, leading to the layoff of more than 250 employees. More HERE
EL PASO, Texas — Customs officers found 957 pounds of marijuana hidden in a truckload of concrete pipes.
The 1993 International tractor trailer from Mexico was X-rayed at the Bridge of the Americas on Friday. The examination revealed anomalies in the cargo that turned out to be 816 packages of the drug, U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman Rick Lopez told the El Paso Times.
Officers cut through the concrete pipes to find the marijuana packages encased inside.
CBP officials put the drugs value at $765,000 and said the case was still under investigation. From Chron.com
WASHINGTON—The U.S. Department of Justice today announced the availability of an online computer system to help protect states and consumers from automobile fraud and to provide law enforcement with new tools to investigate fraud, theft, and other crimes involving vehicles. The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System, or NMVTIS, will be available for consumers on January 30, 2009 and will be accessible through third party, fee-for-service websites. The Office of Justice Programs’ (OJP) Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) administers NMVTIS in coordination with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
The system allows state motor vehicle administrators to verify and exchange titling and brand data and provides law enforcement officials, consumers, and others with critical information regarding vehicle histories. Consumers now have access to the vehicle’s brand history, odometer data, and basic vehicle information and can be redirected to the current state of record to access the full title record if available. Law enforcement can track the vehicle’s status from state to state by accessing the system directly.
According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, car theft is a profitable business generating nearly $8 billion a year. Along with implementing this system, the Department has outlined the various responsibilities and reporting requirements for states, auto recyclers, junk yards and salvage yards, and insurance carriers. The Department has designed the system consistent with federal law that requires that the system be paid for through user fees and not dependent on federal funding.
Since 1997, the Department of Justice has committed over $15 million to assist states and other stakeholders in the implementation of NMVTIS. Currently, NMVTIS has the participation, or partial participation, of 36 states. Ultimately, with full participation from all 50 states and the District of Columbia, NMVTIS will prevent stolen motor vehicles, including clones, from entering into interstate commerce; protect states and consumers from fraud; reduce the use of stolen vehicles for illicit purposes including fundraising for criminal enterprises; and provide consumer protection from unsafe vehicles. In research conducted by the Logistics Management Institute, the system is estimated to save taxpayers between $4 and $11 billion each year. For further information on NMVTIS, visit www.nmvtis.gov.
The Office of Justice Programs, headed by Acting Assistant Attorney General Laurie Robinson, provides federal leadership in developing the nation’s capacity to prevent and control crime, administer justice, and assist victims. OJP has five component bureaus: the Bureau of Justice Assistance; the Bureau of Justice Statistics; the National Institute of Justice; the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention; and the Office for Victims of Crime. Additionally, OJP has two program offices: the Community Capacity Development Office, which incorporates the Weed and Seed strategy, and the Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART). More information can be found at http://www.ojp.gov.
MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — One of Canada’s largest APU manufacturers has been permanently idled, leaving some dealers wondering where to turn for product support.
In a memo sent to its dealers across North America late last night, RigMaster Power states that “general economic conditions” have forced the APU maker out of business.
The company, a separately run subsidiary of Mississauga’s Harper Group, has already ceased operations. It had about 190 dealers throughout North America.
“A secured creditor will be effecting the liquidation of the company’s assets,” states the memo, obtained by todaystrucking.com. “A limited number of finished units may be available for a short period and an alternative supply of parts should come available to customers and dealers early next week as a consequence of the liquidation process.” Read more HERE
A California truck driver was arrested and his refrigerated truck impounded Monday morning in DeSoto County after a search showed the truck was carrying 460 pounds of marijuana.
Chief Willie Huff, chief law enforcement officer for the Mississippi Department of Transportation, said the truck had pulled in to the weigh station in Nesbit about 7 a.m. Monday.
The truck had a license plate in the front window and the driver’s log was missing several required entries.
“The officer became suspicious of the driver’s actions and the answers to the officer’s questions,” Huff said.
MDOT officials received consent to search the vehicle, loaded with a shipment of celery and chili peppers. Full story HERE
(KSL News) Police in Idaho today arrest a man believed to have used the Internet to entice girls in Utah.
Deputies say 35-year-old Arthur Schmierer, of Homedale, Idaho, attempted to solicit girls from Iron County, Utah, to meet him for sexual activity.
Police say they made contact with Schmierer and led him to believe he would be meeting with a 13-year-old girl at a McDonald’s in Nampa, Idaho, this afternoon. Instead, they arrested him and booked him into jail.
Schmierer is a truck driver, and police say he made several communications from out of state. More HERE
Jan. 9 (Bloomberg) — A federal judge has said he may be forced to render an “injustice” and cancel his order telling a Kuwaiti military contractor in Iraq to pay $4.9 million to the family of a U.S. Army officer killed in a road accident.
The contractor, Kuwait & Gulf Link Transport Co., is asking U.S. District Judge William Duffey in Atlanta to throw out the 2007 default judgment, arguing he lacks jurisdiction over the foreign company for a wreck that happened overseas.
Duffey’s remarks at a Dec. 5 hearing suggest he is leaning in that direction, said an attorney for the family of deceased Lieutenant Colonel Dominic Rocco Baragona. The judge might rule at any time.
“I think what the defendant has done here is ghastly,” the judge said, referring to the Safat, Kuwait-based trucking company, according to a transcript of the hearing. “I’m going to interpret my law and my Constitution the way my courts tell me that I should, even though in the bottom of my heart I might think that I am ultimately working an injustice.” More HERE
It’s Daniel Burritt’s truck. It’s his land. It’s his personal religious belief.
It’s just not his legal right, says the New York Department of Transportation, to share that belief on that property, using that truck.
For the last 17 months, Burritt has stored supplies for his company, Acts II Construction, Inc., in a strategically parked trailer – on his private business property – facing traffic from both directions along U.S. Route 11. On that trailer, in large capital letters, is a message:
YOUR WAY OR GOD’S WAY? JESUS SAID, “I AM THE WAY, THE TRUTH, AND THE LIFE. NO MAN COMES TO THE FATHER EXCEPT BY ME.” WILL YOU SPEND ETERNITY WITH JESUS?
Not long after he posted that message, officials from the nearby town of Gouverneur tried to force him to remove it but backed off after Alliance Defense Fund allied attorneys contacted them. Then, in May of last year, Burritt received a letter from the New York State Department of Transportation accusing him of violating state law by posting his message without a permit. More than that, they said, the message-bedecked trailer was a “public nuisance.” Either Burritt could remove the message, or they would. Full story HERE
A national of Somalia living in Kansas City was convicted yesterday for his role in a conspiracy to provide fraudulent commercial driver’s licenses to a large number of Somali and Bosnian nationals, a news release from the office of U.S. attorney John F. Wood said.
Elias Mohamed, 28, participated in a mail fraud conspiracy from April 1, 2003, to Feb. 6, 2006, the release said. The conspiracy involved fraudulent testing for commercial driver’s licenses on the part of the South Central Career Center Truck Driver Training School (SCCC) in West Plains. SCCC had a contract with the state of Missouri to be a “third party tester” of persons seeking to take the driving portion of the Missouri Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) test. Full article HERE