By on February 28, 2019

Image: Ford

Ford’s Fusion sedan has found itself in the headlines for illicit cross-border shipments before, and you know what they say about history repeating.

Regarded as the delivery vehicle of choice after caches of Mexican marijuana were found in U.S.-market models built at Ford’s Hermosillo plant, the sedan’s unlikely double life continues apace. Cartel operatives continue using the model in their smuggling operation, recently shipping a different type of drug to a country with absolutely no use for extra marijuana.

According to the Ontario Provincial Police, employees at four Ontario Ford dealers tipped them off to meth-filled Fusions that rode the rails across the Mexican-U.S. border before finding their way to Canadian lots and showrooms.

Following the December tips, the provincial cops launched Project Sebright, joining forces with the Canada Border Services Agency and provincial police forces in Quebec and New Brunswick. The results? 180 kilograms (397 pounds) of methamphetamine, carrying a street value of about $4.5 million.

“The powerful Sinaloa cartel is well entrenched in that area of Mexico,” said OPP Supt. Bryan MacKillop, as reported by The Canadian Press (via Global News). “We are very certain that they are ultimately responsible for these drugs.”

Dealer employees noticed the spare tires in certain Fusions didn’t match up with the model. Lining the tires were beige, taped bricks of meth. When the cops hunted down other Fusions from the same shipment, nine of the 14 sedans contained drugs. As some vehicles from that shipment had already made their way to points further east, the OPP tipped off their counterparts in other provinces.

A search of another Fusion shipment yielded more illicit cargo, MacKillop said. Twelve of the 14 Fusions contained smuggled meth, all contained within the spare tires.

Standard operating procedure for the cartel is to break into the vehicles and stash the drugs before cars leave for the United States. Once across the border, an operative breaks into the railcars to retrieve the goods, though a breakdown in communication and scheduling can mean the Fusion drug mules miss the rendezvous and make their way into dealerships. In some cases, even into owners’ hands.

Much like in recent incidents in the U.S., someone likely screwed up along the way, Ontario police say.

Speaking to CNN in 2017 following the interception of several weed-filled Fusions, a Ford spokesperson said, “We are working with the FBI and Customs on an extensive investigation. We have confirmed that this is not happening at our plant or at our internal shipping yards.”

[Image: Ford]

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