We have discussed a number of cases during which law enforcement is paying a great deal of attention on what is going on in the country’s airports. No, not simply for cases of potential terrorists.
The last one, this weekend, involved trafficking.
On Saturday, the authorities say that two Pennsylvania men tried smuggling six kilograms of cocaine through Logan International Airport by stuffing bricks of the drug into the lining of their bags. This made the lining unusually heavy, according to police, which made the bag suspicious.
Ezra Mendez, 19, and Erick Domingues-Santos, 25, both of Allentown, Pa., and hereinafter collectively, the “Defendants”, were set to appear in East Boston District Court yesterday to face charges of trafficking in cocaine and conspiring to violate drug laws.
The Defendants, arriving on a flight from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Saturday morning, tried passing through customs 10 minutes apart, each carrying a black roller bag, according to state police according to the Boston Herald
When airport workers noticed an “abnormality” in the bags during the screening process, they emptied the totes, which had a thicker bottom liner than usual and felt “unusually heavy,” state police said.
This undoubtedly raised suspicions even higher given that “false bottom” bags are a common way by which contraband is often secreted.
Indeed, after sending the bags through an X-ray machine, officials found two flat, rectangular plastic-wrapped packages stuffed into each bag’s liner. The powder inside tested positive for cocaine, according to police.
Law enforcement said that each bag contained about three kilograms of cocaine, or just under seven pounds.
On Monday, Pulse Headlines reports , the Massachusetts State Police reported that the airport’scustoms officers had found cocaine in both suitcases using probing and X-ray screening.
“[The Defendants] weren’t with each other, but they were associated with each other,” Massachusetts’ trooper, Paul Sullivan, said on Monday. He then added that both men were arrested by Customs and Border Protection officers at Boston airport. Then, both suspects were turned over to Massachusetts Sate Police Department.
Apparently, the Defendants arrived at Boston Logan International Airport from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, on Saturday morning. They carried identical black suitcases as they passed through customs. During the screening, customs officers realized there was something unusual in the men’s black bags. So, officers stopped the two men to conduct a more exhaustive testing.
After one bag was emptied, it was still thought to have “abnormalities”. Officers decided to pass the bag through x-ray screening. Massachusetts’ police reported that screeners found two flat rectangular plastic-wrapped packages hidden in the suitcase’s liner.
Customs officers said that some white powder was discovered in the plastic-wrapped packages, which was determined to be cocaine. This led to the search of the other bag in which authorities say that they found two flat rectangular plastic-wrapped packages in the liner.
Both bags contained three kilograms of cocaine in the suitcases’ hidden compartments. As a result, the Defendants were arrested and held without bail in Boston
The Defendants have been charged with drug trafficking and conspiring to violate drug law. It is possible they will face federal charges later on.
Attorney Sam’s Take On Federal And State Jurisdiction (Part One)
“But, Sam, how can they do that? How can they prosecute a case in state court and then bring federal charges later?”
Actually, it is not terribly unusual. For a number of reasons and for various types of crimes.
I can tell this will take some explanation.
Yup. We will continue with this topic tomorrow.