Guyanese man charged in NY over cocaine in suitcase handles

A Guyanese man is now before the courts in New York after he attempted to smuggle five pounds of cocaine into the US packed in the handles of his suitcases.

Warren Hawk was on June 6th placed on US$75,000 bail by Magistrate Judge Marilyn D. Go, one day after he was busted at the JFK International Airport when he disembarked a Caribbean Airlines flight.

According to court documents, Hawk presented two roller suitcases and a backpack to authorities at the airport for inspection and stated that the bags and their contents belonged to him. He said he had packed the bags himself. When officials checked one of the roller suitcases, they observed that its handle was unusually thick and did not fully extend. They probed the handle of the suitcase and discovered a white powdery substance inside.

The same discovery was made in the handle of the other suitcase. The substance field-tested for cocaine which totalled 2,190 grammes.

It was only on April 22 that another man, Godfrey Anthony Cassius was caught trying to smuggle just under 18 pounds of cocaine in custard power at the JFK International Airport. Customs officers found the cocaine in four bags labelled “custard powder” after discovering two large cellophane-wrapped bundles that Cassius identified as custard powder he was transporting for his aunt. The substance was tested and results showed that it was cocaine.

He had told officials that he was not aware that the packets contained cocaine but did state that he was paid US$5000 to transport the suitcase.

In February, another Guyanese, Samuel Henry was arrested at JFK after being found with 13.399 kilos of cocaine and 5.950 kilos of marijuana in his luggage shortly after touching down.

The recent cases demonstrate that cocaine continues to slip through authorities at the Cheddi Jagan International Air-port, Timehri even though there has been talk about increased security at the airport. In April, authorities had busted a man with 7.5 kilogrammes of coc-aine concealed in a quantity of cheese rolls, pine tarts and metai.

Taxi driver Nicholas Harinandan has since been charged.


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