ONTD Political

Spain arrests woman with cocaine breast implants

1:58 pm - 12/13/2012
Source - trigger warning for photo of the bags/implants on a table, no visible blood although some staining and wetness to the papers underneath (I assume because they were washed or something). EDIT: THERE IS BLOOD IN THE PHOTO ACTUALLY.

Spanish authorities have arrested a Panamanian woman who arrived at Barcelona airport with 1.38kg of cocaine concealed in her breast implants.

The interior ministry said on Wednesday border police had noticed fresh scars and blood-stained gauze on the woman's chest and pale patches beneath her skin. The woman said she had recently had breast implant surgery.

Officers were suspicious and sent her to a local hospital where the implants were removed and found to contain cocaine, the ministry added.

The woman had flown in from Bogotá, Colombia.

European authorities routinely submit passengers arriving from Latin America to stringent checks to combat drug smuggling.


Keep thinking I should put a trigger warning on this post, but I can't think what it would say. Any suggestions/advice? Does it need one?
yeats 13th-Dec-2012 07:16 pm (UTC)
this is the second weirdest vessel i've read about recently for smuggling cocaine, behind toblerone chocolates. (obvs only a crazy drug addict could think COCAINE is better than TOBLERONE ajfkl;djas)
skellington1 13th-Dec-2012 08:54 pm (UTC)
WHAT? Adulterating Toblerone should be a crime all by itself!
furrygreen 13th-Dec-2012 07:16 pm (UTC)
Well, there ya go. I think I've heard everything but apparently I was wrong. Really? In breast implants?

The idea that officials would take the woman to a hospital to take out her breast implants is also rather horrific in my POV. XD How many women did they drag off to undo that procedure to have such a weighty decision made by border police?

I'm just totally creeped out by the implication of ANYONE taking off with me to have a force surgery that wasn't necessary...
spyral_path 13th-Dec-2012 07:26 pm (UTC)
They did take her to a hospital which probably did a cleaner and safer job of removing the bags than the smugglers would have done themselves.

ETA: I'm creeped out by the entire story too. I can't imagine signing on to have her breasts cut open and sewn shut again twice was her first choice.

Edited at 2012-12-13 07:28 pm (UTC)
layweed 13th-Dec-2012 07:39 pm (UTC)
I don't know a whole lot about the drug trade, but from what I've seen/read, I totally agree, I doubt she signed on for it. Entirely possible it was blackmail or something like that. :(
seasontoseason 13th-Dec-2012 10:52 pm (UTC)
first choice? yeah, no. Women put their bodies and freedom and safety on the line every day because they are desperate, without resources, and without other viable options.
furrygreen 13th-Dec-2012 11:39 pm (UTC)
They did take her to a hospital which probably did a cleaner and safer job of removing the bags than the smugglers would have done themselves.

I'm not worried about the cleanliness of a hospital over an airport. It's the dragging off thing that gets me.
hawkward 13th-Dec-2012 11:57 pm (UTC)
Chances are very likely, being that she's from Colombia, that her family was threatened or held hostage or some equally vile threat was made upon her loved ones in order for her to go through with this. Or she herself was kidnapped and drugged and surgered. Or she's hooked on drugs herself. Or some combination of the above.
romp 13th-Dec-2012 07:33 pm (UTC)
yeah, the whole thing is horrible
lil_insanity 13th-Dec-2012 07:36 pm (UTC)
Right, that was my first thought.
world_dancer 13th-Dec-2012 08:26 pm (UTC)
I understand the discomfort at the idea of being taken away to have surgery performed. But I think it was the more humane thing to do. Their other option would have been to turn her away, send her back, and let her face the people who did this to her in the first place.

And I do think their suspicions were reasonable if it appeared she had a really bad boob job to the point it was bleeding out right then. That's horrible work. Something isn't right. In a worst cast scenario for the cops, the woman's health was endangered by a bad boob job. In a best case scenario, they catch a crook.
seasontoseason 13th-Dec-2012 10:54 pm (UTC)
they could, you know, ask her which she would rather. medical consent isnt something that should ever be dismissed, i dont really care the legal circumstances. without consent it is assault.
asrana 13th-Dec-2012 11:12 pm (UTC)
That's true - I'm not sure they'd have been able to force her to have surgery if she'd entered the UK instead, for example.
furrygreen 13th-Dec-2012 11:41 pm (UTC)
And I do think their suspicions were reasonable if it appeared she had a really bad boob job to the point it was bleeding out right then.

I think they should have much more than mere suspicions to haul her off as it's clear they weren't actually worried about her health. Though, that could just be the author of article that is implying that.
layweed 13th-Dec-2012 07:17 pm (UTC)
Wow.

I am curious as to what set the officers suspicions off, because now I can't help but wonder if "woman + recent breast implants + arriving from Columbia = suspected drug smuggler" from now on.
moonshaz 13th-Dec-2012 09:29 pm (UTC)
I know, I can't help but wonder also.
skellington1 13th-Dec-2012 11:19 pm (UTC)
Makes you wonder, doesn't it? I mean, travel after surgery is never optimal, but it's going to happen sometimes.
littlelauren86 13th-Dec-2012 11:32 pm (UTC)
It's more complicated than that. It starts with a simple interview, and wherever it escalates begins with how you answer.
mahasin 13th-Dec-2012 07:26 pm (UTC)
I swear there was a law and order SVU episode with that exact plot line.
bluebombardier 13th-Dec-2012 07:57 pm (UTC)
Well, there will be NOW.
mahasin 13th-Dec-2012 08:14 pm (UTC)
Ha! I'm not crazy, Season 11, episode 6 "Spooked"

http://vitemo.com/tv/law-and-order-svu-season-11-episode-6-recap-and-review-spooked.html
bluebombardier 13th-Dec-2012 08:45 pm (UTC)
omg I TOTALLY REMEMBER THAT EPISODE.

Part of me wonders if some criminals are taking their cues from TV these days. Is art imitating life or life imitating art? #deepquestions
yeats 13th-Dec-2012 08:15 pm (UTC)
it's like i'm always saying -- i don't WANT to ever kill somebody, but watching law&order all these years has almost certainly made me better at it if i ever did.
violetrose 13th-Dec-2012 09:18 pm (UTC)
There was also a Nip/Tuck episode about it, too.

The practise is really not uncommon. Drug smugglers will find any way to get their wares across borders.
xo_bumblebee 13th-Dec-2012 09:38 pm (UTC)
I thought of exactly that when I saw this (the Nip/Tuck episode). I remember the drug lord dude was blackmailing them into to doing the surgeries...rofl
asrana 13th-Dec-2012 11:09 pm (UTC)
That genuinely makes me wonder whether that's where they got the idea from :-(
ducttapeninja 13th-Dec-2012 07:27 pm (UTC)
Yeah, gotta wonder as well what it was about recent breast implant surgery that made the officers so suspicious (granted I don't know anything about breast implant surgery so I don't know whether the blood-stained gauze and "pale patches under her skin" are normal just after a surgery or what) that they had to actually take her to a hospital and un-do the surgery... How on earth does someone even make that call?

(Also, just a head's up OP, there actually is visible blood on the implant bags in the photo at the article.)
spyral_path 13th-Dec-2012 07:37 pm (UTC)
I;m thinking it was the recentness. Breast augmentation is surgery after all, and requires some recovery time before you resume your normal activities. Taking a transatlantic trip while the incisions are still bleeding after elective surgery is going to raise suspicion. Most people would schedule things differently.
oceandezignz 13th-Dec-2012 07:57 pm (UTC)
It was most certainly the recentness in my mind. Watching my mom go through a mastectomy first and reconstruction afterward, the healing process takes a few weeks for both, and likely the woman was in a fuck ton of PAIN too due to the surgery (and the likely shady conditions in which she got it) and then getting punted onto that transatlantic trip.
asrana 13th-Dec-2012 09:04 pm (UTC)
Oops. Thank you - have edited post.
fluffydragon 13th-Dec-2012 07:33 pm (UTC)
Is there a general ickiness tag? "blood at source"? is that a tag?
asrana 13th-Dec-2012 09:33 pm (UTC)
No tags starting with 'blood...'.

I did wonder about tagging it 'body modification' but was worried about being seen to equate a women most likely not having a choice about having her body exploited to smuggle drugs, with women who choose to modify their bodies...
kitanabychoice 13th-Dec-2012 07:37 pm (UTC)
Something about this is horrifying to me and I'm not sure what part it is. Maybe it is because I know most drug runners like this aren't doing it because they want to, but because they have little other options by the way of making a decent living. Maybe it's just that I'm kind of triggered by drug topics in general. :|
tabaqui 14th-Dec-2012 12:17 pm (UTC)
This. I really can't imagine this woman doing this and actually consenting - it's much more likely she's either an addict who is in debt, or they are somehow blackmailing her or holding a family member for ransom.

The idea that this poor women, in some kind of either physical or mental dire straits, was sliced open so she could have *coke* shoved into her breasts just makes me ill.

And rather homicidal toward the fucking *men* who would so blithely mutilate her for their own gain.
eyetosky 13th-Dec-2012 08:22 pm (UTC)
Oh my god, how in sam hill did she even move without screaming?? I watched a housemate recover from her breast augmentation, and.... god, it was the most awful thing to see the toughest, strongest girl I knew practically curled up in a ball in agony, no matter how many painkillers she took.

Also, given that (admittedly anedotal) experience, I was under the impression one needed a bag for uhm... fluid drainage, not to mention that it is nearly impossible to go to the bathroom or get seated/up from a seat without help.

I have to wonder about the circumstances as to how she got into this. Was she a willing participant bargaining that agony to get on a flight, or was it something even worse?
angelofdeath275 13th-Dec-2012 08:28 pm (UTC)
.....cocaine implants sound incredibly dangerous....I know it's obvious but god I feel so ill about this....
lady_borg 13th-Dec-2012 10:52 pm (UTC)
MTE,
ebay313 13th-Dec-2012 10:16 pm (UTC)
This is so horrifying. Like, all of it. First just the thought of having things put in and out of one's body surgically like it's a purse you can just zip and unzip over and over adding and removing items. And then the fact that these weren't things actually made for and safe for being in one's body. Then realizing that the conditions for the illegal surgeries were probably not the best or safest. And then that this most likely was not her idea but something she was forced into doing. Every part of this is just horrifying.
mary_pickforded 13th-Dec-2012 10:23 pm (UTC)
It's like a storyline from Nip/Tuck.
helldarkangel 13th-Dec-2012 10:44 pm (UTC)


The first thing I thought of was Sin Senos no hay Paraiso.
lady_borg 13th-Dec-2012 10:54 pm (UTC)
I get that technically she broke the law but when I first read about this the only thing i could think of was that she was a drug mule and now a victim is in jail. I really hope they follow up any leads they can get from her to arrest the actual people responsible.
skellington1 13th-Dec-2012 11:19 pm (UTC)
I think most of us are right there with you. Doesn't seem like something anyone would do if they had any other options, and there are a lot of ways to force desperate people into awful shit.
molkat 13th-Dec-2012 11:06 pm (UTC)
Her life must have taken some horrible, dark turn if she would allow someone to cut her body open to stash cocaine in her breasts and then turn around and get cut open again to remove the bags. I hope the people who came up with this plan and likely coerced her into doing it are hunted down.
littlelauren86 13th-Dec-2012 11:45 pm (UTC)
People seem a little bit confused - the officials didn't just haul her to the hospital for just having recently done implants. Breast implants and ass implants are extremely common in Colombia anyway. I'm guessing no one's been questioned before.

Basically, they profile passengers coming off of "high risk" flights. A lot of cocaine comes from Colombia so a Bogota-->Barcelona would be categorized as "high risk" for drug trafficking.

I know in at least some countries, (and even the US) they have official interviews waiting outside of these flights and they pull aside "suspicious" people for simple questioning. As a single black traveler, I get singled out often. Last time it was from a Bangkok ---> Hong Kong flight.

They ask you simple initial questions as you get off, such as your origin, destination, and purpose for traveling. They'll check your itinerary and passbook for appropriate visas. If your answers aren't suspicious, they let you go.
littlelauren86 13th-Dec-2012 11:52 pm (UTC)
If they are suspicious, like vague answers for purpose of traveling, they might take you off for more questioning. They'll ask you for more details like which hotel you'll be staying in, who's paying for it, whether you have money, etc. A suspicious person might be like, "uhh my friend's picking me up from the airport and will drop me off at a hotel, I don't know which one, yes, I'm here in Barcelona with $US 100 for a week, no credit cards or bank account, but here's my friend's phone number!"

Even then, airport officials will simply call the phone number, introduce themselves as officers, and whoever answers will quickly deny knowing the person. Then the real suspicion starts, probably with a luggage search and an x-ray.

What I'm saying is, it escalates to that point.
moonshaz 14th-Dec-2012 01:54 am (UTC)
Thanks for the information!
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