Philadelphia CBP discovers $1.3 million worth of cocaine on commercial flight


U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers seized a shipment of cocaine, with a street value of approximately $1.3 million, hidden in the technical space of a passenger plane arriving at Philadelphia International Airport from the Dominican Republic on August 12. No arrests were made. An investigation is continuing.

CBP officers routinely examine aircraft spaces after flights from overseas arrive. During a search of the flight from Santo Domingo, DR, officers discovered 16 brick-shaped objects concealed under a blanket in an avionics tech space. Officers extracted the bricks and took them to the CBP inspection station after completing the inspection of the plane.

Officers probed each of the bricks and found a white, powdery substance that tested positive in the field for the properties of cocaine hydrochloride.

The cocaine weighed 18.894 kilograms, or just over 41 pounds, 10 ounces. It had a market value of approximately $1,330,000.

“Drug trafficking organizations work very hard to smuggle their dangerous drugs into the United States and Customs and Border Protection agents must be on the lookout to intercept this community poison as well,” Joseph said. Martella, regional port manager for CBP’s Philadelphia Regional Port. “

In the three days leading up to the discovery, the plane made passenger service stops at domestic airports in New York, Miami, San Diego and Philadelphia before arriving from Santo Domingo.

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