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Posted at 06:53 PM ET, 08/07/2012

Almost four pounds of cocaine found in juice boxes, garlic-salt shaker at Dulles Airport

Customs and Border Protection officials found close to four pounds of cocaine hidden in juice boxes and a garlic-salt shaker Saturday night at Dulles International Airport, officials said.

The contraband was found in the bags of Esteban Gustavo Ischiu Rojas, 44, and Jose Victor Munoz Lemus, 42, both of Guatemala, said Steve Sapp, a customs and border patrol spokesman.

Sapp said the street value of the drugs — the combined weight of which was three pounds 12 ounces — was about $120,000.

He said both men had flown in from San Salvador, the capital city of El Salvador, on a Taca airlines airplane.

He said both Rojas and Lemus claimed to be couriers. He said finding the cocaine in the juice boxes and salt shaker was not unusual; officials find drugs hidden creatively in couriers’ bags several times a year.

“We find all kinds of unique things,” Sapp said.

Sapp said many couriers do not know the contents of their bags and do not know they are smuggling drugs, though couriers from countries where officials have made narcotics seizures in the past get increased scrutiny.

According to Sapp, both men have been turned over to the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Police and are facing drug charges.

This item has been updated to correct the name of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

By Mihir Zaveri  |  06:53 PM ET, 08/07/2012

 
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