PHOENIX — In an attempt to stem a recent rise in drug trafficking at Arizona’s borders, National Guard troops are assisting U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers with increased inspections.

The Arizona Republic reported earlier this month that more than 40 Guard members have been helping U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Nogales ports of entry south of Tucson for several weeks. Other smaller teams are stationed at Douglas and San Luis as part of Operation Guardian Support.

Guard members are assisting by processing and inspecting passenger vehicles.

Guard officials say illegal drugs have been found during some of those inspections.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials say the Guard members' presence comes as the federal agency is facing a staff shortage throughout the state’s six crossings.