Jamaica, N.Y. — An arriving passenger at John F. Kennedy International Airport found herself in a “hairy” situation when she was confronted by U. S. Customs and Border Protection Officers.
On November 18, CBP officers stopped Ms. Erika Rodriguez de los Santos who was arriving on a flight from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. During the course of the inspection CBP officers discovered five hair product containers that felt unusually heavy within her baggage. When probed, the containers produced an oil-like substance that tested positive for cocaine. Ms. Rodriguez was arrested for the import of narcotics and was turned over to Homeland Security Investigations. The total weight of cocaine seized is approximately 6.27 lbs.
“This latest seizure demonstrates the steadfastness of CBP officers on the ground to detect, detain and deter those who would try to smuggle these illegal substances,” said Robert E. Perez, director, field operations New York. “CBP is ever vigilant in our daily battle in combating the flow of illicit narcotics from entering the United States.”
Rodriguez now faces federal narcotics smuggling charges and will be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the U.S. Eastern District Court of New York.
All defendants are considered innocent 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.