JAMAICA, N.Y. — An arriving passenger at John F. Kennedy International Airport had more than food to declare as U. S. Customs and Border Protection officers discovered.
On Sept. 22, Reynalda Leal Ricando arrived on a flight from Mexico City, Mexico and was referred to CBP agriculture specialists for an agricultural inspection after declaring food items. During an x-ray examination of her baggage, CBP agriculture specialists identified a suspicious shape concealed in plastic sauce containers and referred the package to CBP officers to complete the inspection. CBP officers probed a tar like mass within the sauce container and discovered a white powdery substance that tested positive for cocaine.
Ricando, a citizen of Mexico, was arrested for the importation of a controlled substance and was turned over to Homeland Security Investigations. The total weight of cocaine found in the two containers seized was approximately 3.3 lbs.
“Cocaine is a dangerous narcotic, and CBP does its part in keeping these drugs off the streets.” said Robert E. Perez, director of CBP’s New York Field Operations. “Our Officers are determined to protect the American people from these illicit substances.”
The approximate street value of the seized narcotic is $58,000.00.
Ricando now faces narcotics smuggling charges, and will be prosecuted by the Queens District Court of New York.
All defendants are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between the official ports of entry. CBP is charged with keeping terrorists and terrorist weapons out of the country while enforcing hundreds of U.S. laws.