Two Venezuelans found with 1kg each of cocaine
Two Venezuelan nationals were separately arraigned in court yesterday after they were found to have one kilogram of cocaine each in their possession.
David Rafael Castillo, 31, was found to have swallowed capsules of the substance. Prosecuting inspectors Jonathan Cassar and Justine Grech told the court how the authorities had received incriminating information on Mr Castillo, which led them to stop him after he got off a flight in Malta while still at the airport. The authorities then got Mr Castillo to sign a consent form, and took him to Mater Dei hospital.
The X-ray showed that Mr Castillo had foreign bodies inside his stomach. The foreign bodies turned out to be capsules containing 1 kilogram of cocaine.
The authorities also found a mobile with messages from the second Venezuelan national, Geraldine Mora Huizi, 38. This led them to search a hotel room in Bugibba, where she was found, as well as another kilogram of cocaine in the sink.
It appears that the two Venezuelans had no relation, apart from the messages found and the fact that they were both found with such a large quantity of the drug.
She too was taken to Mater Dei hospital for an X-ray.
Dr Benjamin Velenzia, representing Ms Huizi, objected to the authorities getting her to sign a consent form to be scanned in hospital without providing her with legal assistance beforehand. Dr Leontine Calleja, representing Mr Castillo, reserved the right to raise this objection at a later stage.
Both of the accused pleaded not guilty, did not contest the validity of the arrest, and did not make a request for bail.
The inspectors had said that the two were awaiting instruction from a foreigner, and that this was tantamount to organised crime. They told the court how Mr Castillo arrived in Malta from Sao Paolo, Brazil, via Zurich. Ms Huizi had arrived days prior to Mr Castillo.
Magistrate Monica presided over the case. Vella