Published Monday, February 15, 2021
Tourist detained at the airport
as a suspect of drug trafficking
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff
During a routine search at the checkpoint of the Airport Police of the Daniel Oduber International Airport in Guanacaste Province, a tourist man of Peruvian nationality was arrested on suspicion of drug trafficking.
According to the police report, the man arrived in the country on a flight from the United States, when at a checkpoint a K-9 canine agent detected the drug that was in the pockets of the man's clothes.
In a more detailed inspection, the police found 170 grams of marijuana, 21 capsules of marijuana oil, two pipes used to smoke marijuana and a syringe.
The suspect was arrested, the drugs and paraphernalia were seized as part of the evidence in the case. Police did not provide the suspect's name.
This is the second arrest of a tourist at one of the international airports arriving from the United States this month.
On Wednesday, Feb. 3, the police officers from the Juan Santamaría International Airport, in Alajuela Province, arrested a U.S. citizen arriving in the country by air as a suspect of hiding several checks in his luggage.
According to the police report, during a routine inspection of the tourist's luggage, the officers found 55 checks valued between $1,500 and $2,000 each, totaling $83,600. The international suspect did not report to immigration officials the checks he was carrying in his luggage, the police said.
Agents seized the checks and $1,070 cash that the expat was carrying. Police didn’t provide the suspect's name either.
According to Law 8204 called "Law on narcotics, psychotropic substances, drugs for unauthorized use, activities related to money laundering and terrorist financing," everybody must declare the money and any type of assets they are carrying when they enter the country.
The law states, "When entering or leaving the country, every person, national or foreign, will be obliged to declare the cash or securities that they carry, if the amount is equal to or higher than $10,000 or it's equivalent in another currency."
Travelers must declare money over $10,000 to customs workers at an immigration post.
By law, non-compliance will end in holding the suspect responsible and the immediate loss of money or values as a penalty. The money or securities seized are delivered to the Costa Rican Institute on Drugs, to finance its operations.
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