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09/19/2012

HSI special agents at JFK International Airport work "To Catch a Smuggler"

ICE Homeland Security Investigations' special agents give the public a window to their work cracking down on criminal organizations trying to smuggle contraband into the US

WASHINGTON — Millions of dollars of contraband are seized annually by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) special agents, and officers with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport, one of the largest hubs for international travel in the United States. In a new series "To Catch a Smuggler," National Geographic TV takes you inside the action.

The ICE HSI JFK Narcotics Smuggling Unit, known as JNSU, is highlighted as members investigate cases involving seized drugs, or apprehend individuals who attempt to smuggle contraband into the U.S. The public can follow the special agents as they uncover criminal activity as National Geographic TV cameras go where people are rarely allowed – into the interrogation room with HSI special agents as they identify, search and question smugglers.

ICE committed to the filming in an effort to educate the American public about the important work HSI special agents do protecting Americans by upholding over 400 federal statutes and U.S. customs laws. As a young federal agency it is important for the public to understand that ICE is responsible for investigating a wide range of domestic and international activities arising from the illegal movement of people and goods into, within and out of the United States.

HSI investigates the smuggling of humans, narcotics, weapons and other types of contraband, as well as immigration crime, human rights violations, financial crimes, cybercrime and export enforcement issues, to name a few. ICE special agents conduct investigations aimed at protecting critical infrastructure industries that are vulnerable to sabotage, attack or exploitation.

The National Geographic TV series shows how people employ numerous methods to smuggle drugs into the country. In one episode an Ecuadorian man is interviewed by HSI special agents, and despite continued protestations, an x-ray reveals he's swallowed large pellets of liquid heroin. Later in the series, a random baggage search by CBP officers of an 18-year-old teenager reveals cocaine in the lining of his luggage, seeping out through the cracks in his suitcase and mixing in with his clothes. After he's arrested, HSI special agents convince him to cooperate and start naming names.

The new series premieres Monday, October 8, at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT. To view a trailer of HSI in action on To Catch a Smuggler, please click the link in the right naivation.