‘Wonder dog’ finds $300K of opium at mail facility near O’Hare - FOX 32 News Chicago

‘Wonder dog’ finds $300K of opium at mail facility near O’Hare

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

A drug-detecting "wonder dog" is being credited with helping federal agents seize a shipment of opium-saturated decorative cloth valued at more than $300,000 from an international mail processing center near O'Hare.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents working at the CBP International Mail Facility recently seized two shipments of the decorative narcotics-laden materials which had been shipped from Laos.

The federal drug-sniffing dog called Rogue alerted agents to the parcels, which contained more than 28 pounds of the drug-soaked cloth, which was valued at $302,000, a release from CBP said.

After Rogue alerted agents, they opened the two packages which contained pieces of decorative cloth and hats. But a field narcotics test revealed the presence of opium in the fabric of the cloth, which emitted a strong odor, the release said.

One parcel contained 23 pieces of opium-saturated cloth weighing 14 pounds, and the other contained 24 pieces of cloth and nine hats, weighing 14.3 pounds. They were manifested as "Hmong Dresses" and addressed to individuals in different Minnesota cities, the release said.

Rogue, a 5-year-old Belgian malinois is one of the CBP Port of Chicago canine family, which works at international mail facilities to examine foreign shipments coming into the United States. Rogues fellow canines include German shepherds, Labradors and beagles.

"CBP narcotic seizures from international mail are on the rise in Chicago," Steven Artino, acting CBP Director in Chicago, said in a statement. "Rogue is a wonder dog in the international mail environment. He transferred from our CBP Cincinnati express consignment operation last April and has now found more than 600 shipments of opium here in Chicago, valued at more than $4 million."

CBP canines are trained to detect large amounts of currency, illegal narcotics, explosives, humans, or dangerous food and plant material, according to CBP.

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