Guyanese man held at JFK with cocaine rum cakes

A 30-year-old man who left Guyana on Tuesday is in prison in the United States after cocaine worth $14 million was discovered in two “rum cakes” he was transporting.

Romel Samuels, 30, was selected for examination on Tuesday by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers after he stepped off a JetBlue flight at the JFK Airport in New York, according to a complaint filed in Brooklyn Federal Court, the New York Daily News reported.

Samuels, 30, was carrying a duty-free bag containing two rum cakes which apparently aroused the officers’ suspicion, the Daily News reported.

The two cakes
The two cakes

When one of the cakes was cut, CPB officers discovered a “white pasty substance,” Homeland Security special agent Dan Donahue stated in the complaint. A field test of the substance determined the filling wasn’t whipped cream, but tested positive for cocaine. A total of 1.5 kilos of cocaine was recovered in the two cakes with a street value of about US$70,000 which is approximately $14 million.

According to the Daily News, Samuels crumbled at that point, and admitted that someone had given him the two rum cakes during a stopover in Trinidad and Tobago and asked him to bring the bag to New York.

He told the officers that he assumed there was something illegal inside the cakes but did not think it was drugs, according to the complaint.

Samuels was ordered held without bail on Wednesday by a magistrate judge. Defence lawyer James Darrow declined to comment, the report said.


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