Portuguese woman jailed in WA for 9 years over cocaine importation

Joint ABF/AFP Media Release: A 42-year-old Portuguese woman has been sentenced to nine years in prison for attempting to smuggle almost five kilograms of cocaine into Australia concealed inside bottles of toiletries in her baggage.

The woman was subjected to a baggage examination by Australian Border Force (ABF) officers at Perth International Airport after she arrived on a flight from Doha on Sunday, 29 December 2019.

Six plastic bottles of toiletry products inside her suitcase returned positive readings for cocaine.

The estimated street value of the drugs seized was just under $2.2 million.

Australian Federal Police (AFP) officers subsequently charged her with one count of importing a commercial quantity of a border controlled drug, namely cocaine, contrary to section 307.1 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth). The maximum penalty for this offence is life imprisonment.

The woman pleaded guilty on 14 February 2020, and today was sentenced in the Perth District Court to nine years imprisonment, backdated to the day of her arrest, with a minimum term of four years six months before becoming eligible for parole.

Her Tourist Visa has already been cancelled and she will be removed from Australia at the completion of her sentence.

The media release published at the time of the woman’s arrest, which included photos and video, can be viewed here.

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