KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- As the officer in charge of COMBAT, Jackson County’s Drug Trafficking Task Force Dan Cumming deals with a lot of dangerous people.

“About 100% of what we recover, if you follow it back far enough up the drug train so to speak, comes from Mexico and is cartel related,” Cummings said.

Just last week, COMBAT worked a case at the request of Independence police.

A tip led them to a Kansas City, Missouri street where a search warrant led to the seizure of tires filled with meth.

“My guess is that’s the way it was shipped from Mexico to Kansas City,” Cummings said.

Cartels get creative when smuggling drugs in customs and border protection has a few recent examples.

Fentanyl in a vehicle transmission, heroine in a gas tank, marijuana inside a car door and cocaine in clay figurines.

Cummings says he’s seeing more cartel related drug busts in Kansas City now than he has in his 35 plus years in law enforcement.

“We switched from meth labs to Mexican cartels,” Cummings said.

The suspect in this recent case told officers the people he works for would kill him if he was deported back to Mexico and he’d rather die in the US because at least he’d get a funeral.

It’s unclear which cartel that suspect is tied to. Cummings says several of them operate in the Kansas City metro. They all have a gentleman’s agreement to get along but south of the border, there’s currently a violent struggle for power and drug routes into the US.

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