On January 2, 2018, a Pinay OFW based in Hong Kong was arrested by the Indian narcotics agents for allegedly bringing in 4.7 kilos of cocaine from Brazil. She was then held at the airport in Cochin after her baggage had been found containing the said illegal drug.
According to THE SUN, Jonna de Torres tried to bring cocaine to India worth US$3.9 million (P 194,000,000). This was the first time Torres had carried drugs to India.
In a separate report made by New India Express, Torres admitted to be paid by a Sao Paulo-based cartel with US$4,000 (P199,500) to bring the cocaine to India. Her trip was well-planned as she was also booked at a hotel in Cochin by the said cartel.
However, Torres was intercepted at Nedumbassery International Airport.
Apparently, the Narcotic Control Bureau officer claimed that they were informed about Torres, a Filipino helper in Hong Kong who had carried drugs for several times in the past to other countries.
The OFW’s passport revealed that she had visited Brazil for 5 days before the New Year and had been in the country in 2015.
Her itinerary also showed a linked flight from Sao Paulo, a port city on the Atlantic Coast of Brazil and then to Cochin via the Ethiopian capital Adis Ababa and the Omani capital Muscat.
In a statement, Torres narrated that a Brazilian whom she doesn’t know had visited her at Sao Paulo and handed her the trolley bag and the hand bag.
“The cocaine was concealed in the trolley bag. The booking of her flight and a room at a hotel in Ernakulam North was done by someone from Sao Paulo,” the officer confirmed.
The officer concluded that the syndicate must have wrongly believed that Nedumbassery Airport would be an easy access to bring in smuggled drugs because of minimal baggage checking. What even surprised them was the fact that the baggage of Torres containing cocaine was undetected at Adis Ababa and Muscat airport and it was only detected upon reaching Nedumbassery where Torres got caught.
Torres did not mention any name during the interrogation.
It was learned that she was being paid with US$2000 (P99,000) to US$4000 (P199,000) for smuggling drugs.
Meanwhile, The SUN claimed to had contacted the Philippine Embassy in New Delhi for an update about the case of Torres,. As of this writing, they had not received any reply.
In India, the maximum penalty for drug smuggling is 20 years of imprisonment and a penalty amounting to 200,000 rupees (P157,000).