A young Irishman is facing an international drug trafficking rap after authorities collared him at a South American airport with nearly a kilo of cocaine buried in his bowels.
Brazilian authorities busted the 20-year-old drug mule Monday as he tried to hop a flight at Congonhas Airport in Sao Paolo bound for Portugal, The Independent of Ireland reports.
The man, identified only as P.B.B., never made it to Lisbon, but the paper said that he was headed for Brussels, Belgium.
Police said they stopped the mule because of his "nervous behavior."
Subsequent scanner images revealed the startling contents that were wending their way through his intestines.
In all, the Independent said P.B.B. had 72 capsules holding 830 grams of the illegal upper stuffed in the innards of his abdomen. He was taken to Santa Misericordia Hospital, where doctors removed the stash from his stomach without incident.
Authorities said that amount of the drug has a street value of about $200,000. The mule now faces up to 15 years in a Brazilian lock-up.
The Independent also reported that a Columbian woman died last week after unsuccessfully attempting a similar stunt, flying from Buenos Aires with 26 ounces of coke in her body to New Zealand
Sorlinda Vega, 37, died after one of the packages, each containing one ounce of the narcotic, burst before being extracted.
It's not the first time that Sao Paolo authorities have made such an unsettling discovery. The Independent reports that upwards of 700,000 passengers pass through the airport daily. About five of those people a day are arrested for drug smuggling.