AN alleged drug smuggler from the United States has been arrested at Sydney Airport after border force officers allegedly found 12 kilos of cocaine secreted in the bottom of his suitcase.
The man, 24, was nabbed at Sydney International Airport last night after arriving on a flight from Chile.
In a statement, the Australian Federal Police said border force officers had selected the man for a baggage examination and, after emptying his suitcase, found it to still be “unusually heavy”.
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Further examination found that a false bottom had been installed in each side of the suitcase. the anomaly was also detected by X-ray imaging.
Border force officers then deconstructed the suitcase and allegedly found a white powdery substance secreted in its lining.
Initial testing of the substance returned a positive result for cocaine. Further forensic testing will be conducted to determine the exact weight and purity of the substance.
Federal police were notified and arrested the man who has since been charged with possessing and importing a commercial quantity of a border controlled drug.
The charges carry a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.
The man appeared briefly in Sydney Central Local Court on Friday where he was refused bail to reappear on April 18.