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Customs Officials Say 3 Pounds Of Cocaine Found On - And In - Person Returning From Dominican Republic

NEW YORK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) - Roughly three pounds of cocaine was found concealed on - and in - a person intercepted at John F. Kennedy International Airport, officials said.

According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection offiicals, Yerlina Lantigua Hernandez DeNova, a Green Card holder, flew in from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic on April 9. When she was searched, customs officials say they found three pellets containing white powder in her purse.

Cocaine Smuggling At JFK
(credit: U.S. Customs and Border Protection)

She was taken to a private area for a more thorough search, where officials say officers found more pellets of white powder in her bra.

That's when DeNova allegedly told officers there were additional pellets inserted in intimate areas of her person.

A test of the pellets turned up positive for cocaine, authorities said.

In total, officials recovered 100 pellets from her - approximately three pounds. The estimated street value is more than $94,000.

She faces a felony drug smuggling charges.

"This seizure is another example of our CBP officers being ever vigilant in protecting the United States from the distribution of these illicit drugs," said Marty Rabon, acting director of CBP's New York field operations.

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