Morning Security Brief: Heroine Control, Iran Supplying Weapons, TSA Duped, and More
More Heroin being seized at the Southwest border. U.S. says Iran is still backing the insurgency in Iraq. And TSA is baffled at how a man was able to crisscross the country with fake boarding passes.
►The amount of heroin being seized at the U.S. border with Mexico is on the rise, according to data from U.S. Customs and Border Protection. “The epidemic abuse of painkillers has ebbed in the United States, and youth now hunger for a cheaper high,” McClatchy reports. Heroin is much cheaper than similar prescription drugs at about $15 a hit compared to $50 to $80 for painkiller like OxyContin. Mexican cartels are working to fill that void, tripling poppy production since 2007.
►The U.S. is concerned that the growing arsenal of more advanced weaponry being used by Shiite Muslim militias in Iraq is being supplied by Iran. “Iran is furnishing new, more deadly weapons to Shiite Muslim militias targeting U.S. troops in Iraq as part of a pattern of renewed attempts to exert influence in the region," Defense Secretary Robert Gates was quoted as saying by Bloomberg. The weapons are a major concern for U.S. troops because of their ability to penetrate thick armor. The U.S. says Iran’s Revolutionary Guard corps supplied the weapons to insurgents, a claim that Iran has denied.
►TSA is investigating how a Nigerian man was able to fly from New York to Los Angeles without a boarding pass . The incident happened on Friday, but the man was released after questioning. Olajide Noibi was taken into custody by the FBI after he attempted to board another flight to Atlanta with an invalid boarding pass, CBS News reports. “FBI officials said a search of his bag uncovered more than 10 other boarding passes in various names that were not his,” they reported. TSA checkpoints are required to match boarding passes with IDs, but in this case it didn’t happen. Noibi wasn’t discovered until the flight was airborne, and the crew counted an extra passenger.
►Texas police are looking to add a remote-controlled aerial drone to their crime-fighting arsenal. The UAV is designed to take photos and videos of traffic accidents, hostage situation, and pursuits of suspects. ⇒ One in 20 federal prisoners could be released under as sentencing change for people convicted of crack cocaine offenses . ⇒ Microchip companies are working on technology to verify the authenticity of microchips after in 2010 the U.S. bought over 59,000 fake microchips from China; these microchips were planned for use for military weapons systems.