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Drug Dealers Stuff Puppies with Heroin to transport
NEW YORK — Colombian drug dealers turned puppies into couriers by surgically implanting them with packets of heroin, federal authorities said Wednesday.
Investigators believe the ring used the dogs, as well as human drug swallowers, to conceal millions of dollars in liquid heroin on commercial flights into New York City for distribution on the East Coast.
Ten puppies, including Labrador retrievers, were rescued during a 2005 raid on a farm in Colombia, the Drug Enforcement Administration said, while announcing more than 30 arrests.
A veterinarian had stitched a total of 3 kilograms of heroin into the bellies of six pups. Three later died from infections after the drugs were removed.
The surviving dogs "are still alive and well, we're told," said John P. Gilbride, head of the DEA's New York office.
Colombian police said they adopted three dogs, one of which was being trained to sniff for drugs.
It was unclear how many dogs might have been used in the overall smuggling scheme, Gilbride said.