Vietnamese-Australian woman caught with 11 lbs of heroin at Vietnam airport

By Quoc Thang   July 24, 2016 | 03:15 am PT
Vietnamese-Australian woman caught with 11 lbs of heroin at Vietnam airport
The drug seized from the Vietnamese-Australian woman at Tan Son Nhat International Airport on Sunday. It would have fetched $750,000 in Australia. Photo courtesy of Tan Son Nhat Customs
The drug would have fetched $750,000 Down Under.

Police and customs officers at Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat International Airport on Sunday arrested a Vietnamese-Australian woman for attempting to smuggle around five kilograms (11 pounds) of heroin to Australia.

The 37-year-old woman, whose name was not revealed, carefully hid the drug in her personal luggage, the police said. They said further that during question, the woman admitted that an unidentified person had hired her to smuggle the drug to Australia for US$25,000.

The contraband would have fetched $750,000 had it been snuck through to Australia, according to the police. Further investigations would be underway, they said.

According to Tan Son Nhat customs officials, they have foiled many major drug-trafficking attempts since June, seizing around 15 kilograms of heroin, cocaine and meth.

Vietnam has some of the world’s toughest drug laws. The production or sale of 100 grams of heroin or 300 grams of other illegal narcotics is punishable by death.

Over the past months, Vietnam has thrown the book at Australian drug mules.

In late June, a Ho Chi Minh City court sentenced 73-year-old Nguyen Thi Huong, also a Vietnamese-Australian woman, to death after finding her guilty of trafficking 3.5 pounds of heroin when checking in for an Australia-bound flight in December 2014.

In late May, another court in Ho Chi Minh City handed down the life sentence to Nathan Andrew James, a 34-year-old Australian man, for attempting to smuggle around 1.5 kilograms (3.3 pounds) of heroin hidden in his luggage to Australia in October 2013.

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