Customs agents in Memphis seize psychedelic drug DMT in 2 separate shipments

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers seized nearly 24 kilos of the psychedelic drug DMT in two separate shipments moving through an express consignment hub in Memphis, Tennessee, during the past six weeks.

The first interception occurred June 9, when customs agents encountered a package labeled “PLANT SUBSTRACT PREMIUM GRADE HORTI CULT,” en route from Mexico City to a residence in rural northeast Arkansas, according to a news release.

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Investigators opened the package and found three silver bags of an unknown brownish plant, identified through lab testing as 6.1 kilos of N-Dimethyltryptamine, or DMT.

DMT can be used by researchers under a schedule I research registration that requires approval from both the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, but investigators believe the intercepted substance was “likely meant for illicit use,” the CBP stated.

According to the DEA, “The intense effects and short duration of (DMT) action are attractive to individuals who want the psychedelic experience but do not choose to experience the mind-altering perceptions over an extended period of time as occurs with other hallucinogens, like LSD. DMT is generally smoked or consumed orally in brews like Ayahuasca.”

The shipment was turned over to Homeland Security Investigations, which followed it to its intended destination and made three arrests along with seizing other drugs, the CBP stated.

Meanwhile, the second seizure occurred July 8 at the same facility, when investigators encountered a package labeled almost identically to the first as “PLANNT SUBSTRAC PREMIUM GRADE OF HORTI.”

The July 8 shipment was en route from rural Chiapas in southern Mexico to a residence northwest of Philadelphia, WHBQ reported.

Upon inspection, investigators found 14 bundles of a wood bark substance, which lab testing identified as DMT weighing 17.85 kilos, the TV station reported.

The shipment was turned over to Homeland Security Investigations, which followed it to its intended destination and made one arrest, the CPB confirmed in a news release.