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Philadelphia CBP Seizes Nearly 20 Pounds of Cocaine on Flight from Jamaica

Release Date: 
December 8, 2015

PHILADELPHIA — U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers seized 19 pounds, 9 ounces of cocaine that was concealed inside the cargo hold of a flight that arrived to Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) Saturday from Montego Bay, Jamaica.

Officers made no arrests. An investigation continues.

“Narcotics interdiction remains a CBP enforcement priority, and a mission that we take very seriously. We are pleased that these dangerous drugs will not reach our city’s streets,” said Susan Stranieri, CBP Port Director for the Area Port of Philadelphia. “CBP remains vigilant at our nation’s borders, and we’ll continue to do our part to help keep our communities safe.”

Philadelphia CBP officers discovered nearly 20 pounds of cocaine concealed behind an access panel in a cargo hold of an airplane that arrived from Montego Bay, Jamaica on December 5, 2015.

Philadelphia CBP officers discovered nearly 20 pounds of cocaine concealed behind an access panel in a cargo hold of an airplane that arrived from Montego Bay, Jamaica on December 5, 2015.

CBP officers conducted a cabin sweep and a cargo hold inspection after the aircraft arrived about 6 p.m. Saturday. While examining the cargo hold, officers discovered two drawstring-style backpacks concealed behind an access panel. Each backpack contained four brick-shaped objects consisting of a white, powdery substance that field-tested positive for cocaine.

The cocaine weighed a combined 8.8734 kilograms, or about 19 pounds, 9 ounces, and has a street value of approximately $600,000.

CBP routinely conducts inspection operations on flights arriving from locations that are known narcotics source nations or transportation hubs. A typical narcotics seizure at PHL consists of personal use amounts discovered on a traveler. Sometimes, CBP discovers larger loads.

One previous cocaine seizure of note occurred in June. CBP officers arrested Italian man Fabio Dalloco, 45, for smuggling 14 pounds of cocaine to PHL on a flight from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic.

On a typical day, CBP seizes 10,327 pounds of drugs at and between our nation’s 328 ports of entry. In addition to narcotics enforcement, CBP routinely conducts inspection operations on arriving and departing international flights and intercepts unreported currency, weapons, prohibited agriculture products, and other illicit items.

View CBP’s ‘On a Typical Day’ enforcement stats at CBP Snapshot.

Travelers are encouraged to visit CBP’s Travel section to learn rules, tips and advice to help quickly complete their CBP international arrivals inspection.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017