Drug bust: Cocaine found in smuggler’s breast implants

BY NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Published: Friday, August 15, 2014, 3:07 PM Updated: Friday, August 15, 2014, 5:31 PM

The 43-year-old Venezuelan was stopped after she became nervous during a routine screening. She’s been detained at a Spanish hospital.

RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / SPANISH NATIONAL POLICE" NO MARKETING NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTSSpanish National Police/AFP/Getty ImagesThe Spanish National Police released this photo of the cocaine-laced implants.

What a boob!

Spanish police have arrested a 43-year-old Venezuelan woman who landed in Madrid’s international airport trying to smuggle 3.7 pounds of cocaine via her breast implants.

Narcotics agents started to suspect something was up while they were performing routine screenings of passengers who had arrived from Bogota, Colombia, and the woman began acting strange. Her luggage searches didn’t reveal anything suspicious, but when female agents frisked her they noticed irregularities and deformities in both of the woman’s breasts.

The woman eventually copped to carrying implants stuffed with cocaine, according to a police statement. She was sent to a hospital and detained for an alleged crime against public health, the statement added.

Surprisingly, stuffing breast implants with contraband is not uncommon, according to Dr. Matthew Schulman, a New York City board-certified plastic surgeon.

“There were alerts put out several years ago about concerns about terrorists using breast implants as a way to move bombs, so it’s one of those things in the plastic surgery community we are aware of,” he said. “It’s probably done more often than people realize.”

But how? Replacing the saline in a saline breast implant with cocaine, Schulman speculates.

“There’s obvious risks with that because it was probably not done under sterile conditions, so there’s risk of infection and also the body absorbing that cocaine, which could cause sudden death from a cocaine overdose,” he said.

The woman might have thought she was in the clear because airport security personnel “are very reluctant to touch breasts” and other private parts, Schulman added.

At Newark Liberty and John F. Kennedy International Airports, criminals have unsuccessfully tried to smuggle drugs via luggage hand rails and liners, and also by swallowing them, said Howard Cheng, a spokesperson for Customs and Border Protection in New York.

Spain has a specially employed unit to inspect passengers coming from countries with a history of major drug production.

mengel@nydailynews.com

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