Police: Man Swallows Heroin Capsules In Smuggle Attempt

FORT LAUDERDALE – (CBS4) – A Colombian man traveling through Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport had more than just a case of indigestion. 

In fact, authorities say he swallowed 30 heroin capsules in an attempt to smuggle them into the country earlier this month. 

Hernando Estupinan-Hernandez, 45, might have gotten away with it, but the increasingly intolerable stomach pains caused him to call an ambulance.

When doctors at Broward General Medical Center examined him, they discovered he had actually swallowed the heroin capsules. He excreted 23 of the capsules containing about 184 grams of the drug, according to an arrest affidavit. All of the capsules have since passed his system. He was arrested on December 3, 2010.

Hernandez told detectives that he had decided to risk taking the drugs after his clothing business had failed, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported. 

If convicted, he could spend the next 30 years in prison and a $500,000 fine. He remained in jail Thursday on a $500,000 bond.

The South Florida Sun-Sentinel contributed to this report.

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