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Sunday, July 14, 2024

CBP Intercepts 43 Pounds Marijuana Destined for England

A Manchester, England-bound woman is facing felony drug charges after U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers found nearly 43 pounds of marijuana in her luggage at Washington Dulles International Airport on Thursday.

Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) Police officers charged Lakedra Hamilton, 26, of Houston, Texas, with felony possession with intent to distribute.

CBP has observed an increasing trend of United States-based marijuana being smuggled in bulk to Europe and Africa where high-quality weed can fetch prices many times higher than in the U.S.

CBP officers were inspecting baggage being loaded onto an Ireland-bound flight when they encountered large, vacuum-sealed bags of marijuana concealed in clothing in two hard sided suitcases.

CBP officers identified the traveler through baggage tags and offloaded Hamilton from the aircraft.  Officers escorted Hamilton and the two suitcases to CBP’s inspection station where officers retrieved two vacuum-sealed bags of a green, leafy substance. The substance field-tested positive for marijuana.

The marijuana weighed a combined 19.497 kilograms, or about 43 pounds, and has a street value of as much as $200,000 in the United States, depending on potency. This load could fetch two to three times more in London.

Hamilton was scheduled to travel from Ireland to Manchester.

CBP officers turned Hamilton and the marijuana over to MWAA Police officers.

“We hope that this seizure and arrest serves as a warning to other would-be drug couriers that Customs and Border Protection will seize their illicit product and our partners will hold smugglers accountable through aggressive prosecutions,” said Marc E. Calixte, CBP’s Area Port Director for the Area Port of Washington, D.C. “Travelers should remember that marijuana remains illegal federally, and smugglers may face severe consequences when CBP catches them.”

This seizure is the latest in a trend of passengers smuggling bulk amounts of marijuana and hashish to Europe.

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Homeland Security Today
The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.
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Homeland Security Today
Homeland Security Todayhttp://www.hstoday.us
The Government Technology & Services Coalition's Homeland Security Today (HSToday) is the premier news and information resource for the homeland security community, dedicated to elevating the discussions and insights that can support a safe and secure nation. A non-profit magazine and media platform, HSToday provides readers with the whole story, placing facts and comments in context to inform debate and drive realistic solutions to some of the nation’s most vexing security challenges.

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