A drug bust at Miami International Airport had a decidedly Florida flavor.
One clue: the brown and beige sandals were rather heavy for such a simple looking pair.
According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers, a man traveling from Jamaica tried to smuggle more than a pound of cocaine inside a pair of sandals.
On Friday, officers said they found a white powdery substance and a tiny drug balloon, or pellet, concealed in the casual footwear during a baggage inspection. The items weighed about 1.3 pounds and field tested positive for cocaine.
They also discovered that he swallowed more than two dozen pellets filled with cocaine.
Unlike the character in the famous Jimmy Buffett song, “Margaritaville,” this man who “blew out my flip flop” didn’t get to “cruise on back home.”
Instead, he was sent to a Miami-Dade hospital for an X-ray before being placed in custody of the feds.
That’s because when he was questioned by customs agents, the traveler “admitted to swallowing cocaine,” officers said in their report.
The X-ray also showed the presence of foreign objects. They would soon be identified.
“The individual later passed 28 pellets testing positive for cocaine,” the customs report said.
“Swallowing drugs is an extremely dangerous method of concealment and CBP officers are highly skilled at thwarting smuggling attempts,” said Miami International Airport Acting Port Director Robert Del Toro in a statement. “It’s important to deter this type of illegal activity which can be fatal if a pellet bursts.”
Adds Miami/Tampa Field Office Director of Field Operations Vernon Foret: “Smugglers looking to bring in illicit drugs will be caught no matter what the concealment method is.”
Foret may have a point. This isn’t the first time recently footwear didn’t pass muster with customs agents at MIA.
On Feb. 11, Del Toro posted an account on Twitter of the arrest of a passenger who tried to smuggle .43kg of cocaine inside a pair of sneakers.