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CBP at JFK Seizes Cocaine in Handrails

Release Date: 
June 18, 2014

JAMAICA, N.Y. —Smugglers of illegal narcotics will try almost anything to get their dangerous drugs into the United States.  Fortunately, U. S. Customs and Border Protection Officers at John F. Kennedy International Airport are aware of their concealment methods.

JFK Cocaine in Hand Rail

Cocaine concealed inside the hand rails of a suitcase at JFK International Airport.

On June 5, Mr. Warren Hawk, a citizen of the United States, arrived at John F. Kennedy International Airport from Georgetown, Guyana and presented himself for inspection.  During the examination of Hawk’s suitcase, CBP officers noticed that the handle rails were unusually thick.

The passenger was subsequently escorted to a private search room where CBP officers searched his baggage.  CBP officers probed one of the rails revealing a white powdery substance that tested positive for cocaine.  In total, approximately 4.82 lbs. of cocaine was seized with an approximate street value of more than $82,000.

“CBP Officers continue to adapt to various concealment methods employed by these smugglers, and CBP remains ever vigilant in protecting the United States from the distribution of these dangerous drugs,” said Robert E. Perez, Director of CBP’s New York Field Operations.

CBP officers placed the passenger under arrest and turned him over to Homeland Security Investigations.  He 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 unless and until proven guilty. 

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017