SARS busts four drug mules with R6.8m drugs at OR Tambo

SARS Customs officials and detector dogs intercepted four drug mules trying to smuggle cocaine estimated at more than R4.2-million in four separate incidents at OR Tambo International Airport over the weekend.

They also intercepted a box from India that contained 6.2kg of ephedrine worth R1.8-m during a random check at a mail distribution outlet – raising the total of the drug busts to over R6.8-million.

“In yesterday’s incident‚ a Bolivian female passenger in transit to Maputo was found with a bag that a detector dog reacted positively to after X-ray scanners revealed four blocks of white powdery substance. These were confirmed to be cocaine weighing 9kg estimated at R2‚589‚000‚” SARS said on Monday.

It added that in an earlier incident on Friday‚ a South African airline female crew member was subjected to a physical search that revealed a body wrap underneath her uniform with cocaine weighing 6.585kg estimated at R1‚894‚504.

“The third incident was‚ again‚ with a suspicious looking South African female who admitted to having narcotics estimated at R575 400. She claimed to have no luggage but this was brought to a search area where two detector dogs reacted positively to body bags hidden inside her handbag.

“The fourth incident involved a Congolese male in transit to Kinshasa who was subjected to a body search and referred to hospital for X-ray where a scan revealed objects in his stomach that tested positive for cocaine after he expelled one of them.”

All four suspects had been handed over to the South African Police Service for further investigation and possible prosecution and were expected to appear in court‚ SARS added.

“In the final incident‚ a white powdery substance weighing 6.20kg estimated at R1.8-million in a box from India tested positive for Ephedrine during a random check at a mail distribution outlet.

“The narcotics were handed over to SAPS for further investigation.”


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