Ali Al Mugahwi, Director of Airport Operations Department at Dubai Customs
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Dubai Customs inspectors has thwarted an attempt to smuggle 1.28kg of cocaine stuffed in 60 capsules and concealed in an African passenger’s tummy. The smuggler who oddly swallowed this huge quantity of cocaine pills was coming into the UAE from an African country through Dubai International Airport, Terminal 3. The interception was named “Cocaine Pills” operation.
Elaborating on the circumstances of the seizure, Ali Al Mugahwi, Director of Airport Operations Department at Dubai Customs, said: ”Thanks to our inspectors’ expertise, vigilance and knowledge of body language, the African passenger raised their suspicions as he walked into the Customs checkpoint.”
In similar situations, routine inspection procedures include screening the passenger’s luggage, followed by a manual search. At this stage, if the passenger shows signs of restlessness and anxiety while nothing unusual is found in his luggage, he is referred to a hi-tech device which can reveal any hidden substances in his intestines.
Al Mugahwi continued that murky objects were detected in the passenger’s bowl. As he was questioned by the Passenger Investigation Office at the Airport Operations Department, the smuggler confessed that he was handed the narcotics at the departure airport, where he ingested 60 capsules filled up with 1.28 kg of cocaine. The plan was to eject the drug pills once in the country and deliver them to someone in exchange of a certain sum of money.
As per the joint collaboration and coordination between Dubai Customs and Dubai Police General Headquarters, the smuggler, the seizure report and the seized narcotics were handed over to the General Department of Anti-Narcotics for further action.
Al Mugahwi explained that the Airport Operations Department at Dubai Customs is tasked with facilitating entry procedures of passengers’ coming into the country through airports, while at the same time, protecting the society against the dangers of smuggling.