FUKUOKA (TR) – Fukuoka Prefectural Police earlier this month arrested a 68-year-old American male for allegedly attempting to smuggle thousands of tablets of Ecstasy through Fukuoka Airport, reports the Asahi Shimbun (Dec. 25).
At 12:40 p.m. on December 11, Zachary Page Arnold arrived at the airport on a flight from France via Korea with about 10,000 tablets of MDMA, which is also known as Ecstasy, concealed inside a suitcase.
According to police, the contraband, which weighed about 4.7 kilograms and has a street value of around 40 million yen, was inside plastic bags taped inside the false bottom of the suitcase.
“I was told to carry [the suitcase] but I didn’t know what was inside,” Arnold was quoted by police in denying the allegations.
Prior to the discovery, a Japan Customs official found Arnold to be suspicious after observing the size of the bag in his possession.
According to Japan Customs, the seizure of Ecstasy is the largest on record at the airport.
Over the the first six months of this year, authorities uncovered 48 cases of smuggling MDMA and other synthetic narcotics across the country. In those cases, the amount seized totaled about 27,000 tablets.