Customs and Border Protection seizes cocaine hidden in beef patties at JFK International

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport stopped a woman smuggling cocaine hidden in beef patties from Jamaica Jan. 17.

CBP officers intercepted passenger Chantal Alecia Bedward, a Jamaica citizen, arriving from Kingston, Jamaica. During her examination, the officers found what appeared to be a box of Tastee Brand, Jamaican beef patties.  The officers escorted Bedward to a private search room where the box of beef patties was opened, revealing 12 duct-taped packages, which were probed, and produced a white powder that tested positive for cocaine.

Bedward was arrested for the importation of a controlled substance and was turned over to Homeland Security Investigations. The approximate gross weight of cocaine seized was four lbs., with an estimated street value of $70,000.

“This seizure demonstrates the vigilance and dedication demonstrated daily by CBP officers at JFK, in keeping these prohibited and dangerous narcotics off the streets of our communities,’ said Robert E. Perez, director, field operations in New York for CBP.

Bedward faces federal narcotics smuggling charges and will be prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the U.S. Eastern District Court of New York.