Charges Dismissed Against Trucker Arrested in Record $20 MILLION Drug Seizure
Buffalo, NY – Criminal charges against a trucker caught hauling a record amount of drugs last month at the U.S.-Canadian border have been dropped.
On June 25, U.S. Customers and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Peace Bridge Cargo Facility made a Northern Border record seizure of 9,472 pounds of marijuana from a tractor-trailer shipment.
During an inspection, CBP agents discovered 55 wooden pallet boxes that contained 8,320 vacuum sealed packages of marijuana worth more than $20 million dollars in estimated street value.
The drugs were seized from a big rig driven driven by 26-year-old Prabjot Nagra, who is a citizen of India and a Canadian Permanent Resident.
Following the seizure, Nagra was charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana.
However, according to Alexander Anzalone, Nagra’s public defender, the trucker denied knowing the drugs were present.
Last Thursday in U.S. District Court, prosecutors moved to drop the charges against Nagra.
In an announcement, the U.S. Attorney’s Office indicated the charges were dropped “to allow the government additional time to conduct a full forensic examination of electronic evidence and to permit additional steps to be taken in the ongoing transnational investigation.”
U.S. Magistrate Jeremiah McCarthy dismissed the case without prejudice, which means charges could be filed again in the future.
This bust ranks as the largest narcotics seizure recorded on the northern border and the 23rd in the United States, for a period covering the last five years.
Only two weeks prior, another truck driver, Gurpreet Singh, 30, also a citizen of India, was arrested at the Peace Bridge after officers seized 3,346 pounds of marijuana hidden in a load of peat moss.
These incidents add to the recent huge increase in drug seizures within the Buffalo Field Office.
From October 1, 2019 through June 27, 2020, ports within the Buffalo Field Office (which covers 16 ports of entry throughout New York State) have made over 700 narcotic seizures totaling more than 20,180 pounds – an increase of approximately 2,000% from fiscal year 2019 during the same time period.