x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

US tourist found with 2kg of cocaine in Dubai, court told

An American tourist found with nearly two kilograms of cocaine in a false-bottomed suitcase denied trying to smuggle it into Dubai - telling the Criminal Court yesterday he meant to take it to Holland instead.

DUBAI // A tourist found with nearly two kilograms of cocaine in a false-bottomed suitcase denied trying to smuggle it into Dubai - telling the Criminal Court yesterday he meant to take it to Holland instead.

"I bought it from Columbia and travelled through Brazil then onto Dubai in order to head to Holland," explained the 38-year-old American MJ.

Prosecutors said the man arrived in Dubai International Airport at just before midnight on June 30 this year and roused the suspicion of inspectors as one of his bags had an inexplicably thick bottom.

AA, a Dubai Airport inspector, said he noticed the unusual thickness and informed his boss, who ordered a manual search of the bag.

Court records show that the bottom of the bag was covered with a plastic sheet fixed to the bag with screws. When the plastic sheet was removed, a grey bag containing 1.788kg of cocaine was found.

Prosecutors said the man willingly confessed.

"He said he was asked by someone to deliver the cocaine to a person that he did not know in Holland in return for 7,500 Euros," said BM, another inspector at Dubai Airport.

A verdict is expected on September 30.

salamir@thenational.ae