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Thursday, May 15, 2003 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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1,300 pounds of marijuana hidden in wood shavings

BLAINE — An X-ray machine at the Canadian-U.S. border crossing at Blaine detected 1,309 pounds of marijuana in a truckload of wood shavings, the U.S. Bureau of Customs and Border Protection says.

Customs agents seized the truck Tuesday and arrested the driver, Blake McDonald, 48, of New Westminster, British Columbia, for investigation of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance. He was turned over to Whatcom County officials in Bellingham for prosecution.

The shipment from Kelowna, British Columbia, was on its way to Long Beach, Calif. The truck, trailer and its wood shavings cargo also were seized.

The port director for the federal agency, Peg Fearon, says drug seizures are a welcome byproduct of anti-terrorism efforts.

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