Man caught smuggling cocaine worth $1.3m

  • 14/11/2017
Cocaine powder in plastic bag with a packages
Photo credit: Getty

"Inconsistencies" in a Brazilian man's suitcase led to his arrest for attempting to smuggle in 3kg of cocaine, worth up to $1.3 million.

The 38-year-old was caught at Auckland International Airport on Sunday, after arriving on a flight from Chile.

A baggage search revealed inconsistencies with his suitcase, which was found to have the cocaine hidden in its lining.

Customs manager passenger operations at Auckland Airport, Peter Lewis, says the consistent risk-assessing, questioning passengers and searching luggage pays off regularly for Customs.

"Our officers are well-trained and equipped to identify drug couriers," he said.

"This seizure is the result of thorough work by our frontline officers as well as those working behind the scenes to identify risk-travellers."

Mr Lewis said Customs have arrested seven drug couriers at Auckland Airport in the last three months. They arrived from Thailand, Chile, and Brazil, carrying a total of over 20kg of either methamphetamine or cocaine.

The man appeared in the Manukau District Court On Monday afternoon and remains in custody.