Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents and members of the Portage County Drug Task Force have seized more than 400 pounds of marijuana shipped from Mexico to Northeast Ohio hidden in new Ford Fusion vehicles.
Investigators are now trying to uncover where the supply line for the marijuana began and who was supposed to be responsible for retrieving it.
"Clearly, something went wrong", the DEA's Silverio Balzano told CNN.
After touching down at a dealership in Youngstown, Ohio, Fusions loaded with pairs of half-crescent packs of weed in place of spare tires were found between the dates of July 7 to 11.
The marijuana, divided into 32-pound, half-moon-shaped packages, was found in 15 cars in four OH counties, according to CNN.
More than $1 million of marijuana smuggled to Northeast Ohio in Fords shipped from Mexico, officials say
This isn't the first time Ford Fusions made in Mexico have been used to smuggle marijuana.
Authorities indicate that similar cases involving "420'd" Ford Fusions have also recently been identified in Pennsylvania, Minnesota, as well as in Phoenix. According to a release posted on the department's Facebook page, police recovered "a large quantity of marijuana packaged in the trunk of seven vehicles where the spare wheel should be".
"We're aware of the situation and are taking it very seriously", a Ford Motor Company spokesman said Saturday.
Ford said they confirmed, "this is not happening at our plant or at our internal shipping yards".
Drug enforcement agents might be especially alarmed because it appears in each of these cases, a hitch arose with the Mexican smugglers' US counterparts.
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