CHARLOTTE, NC - One hundred state and local officers from 61 North Carolina law enforcement departments were trained here this week in highway drug and bulk cash interdiction techniques following U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE's) Fourth Annual Interdiction Seminar.
The seminar, which began Tuesday and culminates this afternoon, is hosted annually by the Assistant Special Agent-in-Charge Office in Charlotte, North Carolina. The training provides local law enforcement with state-of-the-art techniques and equipment to combat the drug trade in North Carolina.
ICE estimates that in the last two fiscal years, North Carolina highway interdiction teams comprised of ICE agents and law enforcement personnel throughout the state, have seized $5.6 million in drug proceeds, 14 vehicles, 153 kilos of cocaine and 2.2 lbs of meth.
This year, the ICE Charlotte ASAC Office, purchased nearly $70,000 worth of interdiction equipment that will be distributed this afternoon. Every training participant will receive a portable video scope, a large under-vehicle examination mirror with a detachable sure-fire flashlight and a high-end Leatherman tool.
Charlotte ASAC Del Richburg stated, "These training efforts are critical to our collaborative war on drugs. Criminals are constantly training on ways to circumvent the law, so we too must train to keep up with the ever evolving criminal enterprise that thrives on greed."
"Drug traffickers continue to be a serious menace to our society," said U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina Gretchen C.F. Shappert. "The successful apprehension of drug traffickers and the confiscation of their ill-gotten drug proceeds requires up-to-the-minute training for state and local law enforcement. We are fortunate in North Carolina, that ICE has continued to provide timely and sophisticated training for state and local narcotics officers. ICE has demonstrated tremendous leadership in the creation of training programs, task forces, and data bases to facilitate law enforcement partnerships. This week's training is yet another example of the close collaboration between agencies and officers which works to benefit all of us."
ICE encourages the public to report suspicious activity regarding illicit drug activities and any other crimes by calling its 24-hour tip-line at 1-877-DHS-2ICE.