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Contraband
04/09/2010

Miami airport ramp worker and union official arrested for narcotics possession

MIAMI - An airline ramp worker, who is also a vice president for an airline employee union at the Miami International Airport (MIA), was arrested Thursday in Miami for narcotics possession and distribution. The arrest was the result of information developed by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) special agents regarding the alleged smuggling and distribution of narcotics at MIA.

Miguel Angel Vento, 43, of Doral, Fla., was arrested during a traffic stop, which resulted in the seizure of cocaine and marijuana that was packaged for distribution. A subsequent search of his residence resulted in the seizure of additional cocaine and marijuana. ICE and Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) special agents and detectives of the Miami Dade Police Department (MDPD) also seized narcotics paraphernalia, packaging material and other evidence at Vento's Miami residence.

"This arrest and narcotics seizure demonstrates ICE's continuing efforts to focus on the internal threat within aviation security and our critical infrastructure areas," said Anthony V. Mangione, special agent in charge of ICE's Office of Investigations in Miami. "ICE will continue to work with its federal, state and local partners at Miami International Airport to deter, disrupt and dismantle groups and criminal organizations that threaten homeland security by smuggling drugs and contraband into the United States."

U.S. Attorney Jeffrey H. Sloman stated, "Airport security is a primary concern in protecting our nation from threats of terror and preventing the smuggling of illegal narcotics. We will remain vigilant in the protection of our borders."

The ongoing investigation is being conducted by ICE's Office of Investigations MIA internal conspiracy investigative group, DEA, and MDPD.

Information regarding narcotics smuggling and trafficking can be reported to ICE at 1-866-DHS-2ICE (347-2423).

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Dustin Davis.