US Marijuana Party

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Pot-smuggling border guard sentenced

SEATTLE (AP) -- A U.S. border guard who tried to drive a van filled with 243 kilograms of marijuana across the border from Canada was sentenced to five years in prison followed by five years of supervised release Friday.

Cory Whitfield, 35, of Point Roberts, Wash., was wearing an "INS" -- Immigration and Naturalization Service -- turtleneck when he tried to cross the border Sept. 13. He flashed a diplomatic passport and told a guard, "I'm one of us."

Whitfield worked for INS for eight years before it was merged into U.S. Customs and Border Protection. At the time of his arrest he worked as a U.S. customs officer at Vancouver International Airport.

Whitfield told the guard the purpose of his trip was to deliver an engine to Bellingham. When the inspector looked in the back of the van he found an engine block strapped to the floor of the cargo area.

Cabinets that lined the inside of the van were packed full of the marijuana, worth up to $1.6 million US.

Whitfield pleaded guilty in November. He had no previous criminal record.
© Canadian Press 2005


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