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Peruvian man sentenced for attempting to import cocaine through Newark Liberty International Airport

NEWARK, N.J. – A Peruvian man was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court to 30 months in prison for smuggling more than two kilograms of cocaine, with a street value of over $250,000 into the United States from Lima, Peru. The case was investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) with the assistance of U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

Heber Razuri-Leon, 47, was sentenced Monday by U.S. District Judge Esther Salas to 30 months in federal prison to be followed by deportation to Peru. In addition Razuri-Leon was ordered to forfeit more than $12,000 to the United States.

According to court records, on December 22, 2011, Razuri-Leon arrived at Newark Liberty International Airport en route to Japan, on a Continental Airlines flight from Lima. Razuri-Leon was selected for a routine secondary examination by CBP officers, who discovered a pair of flip-flop sandals that felt heavy. They probed the sandals and found a white powdery substance, which field tested positive for cocaine. CBP officers then discovered several deflated soccer balls, which also felt heavy. They probed the soccer balls and found a white powdery substance inside the balls, which also field tested positive for cocaine. In total, the cocaine found inside of Razuri-Leon's suitcase weighed approximately 2.24 kilograms.

Razuri-Leon pleaded guilty July 2, 2012, to the charge of conspiring and agreeing with others to import 500 grams or more of a mixture or substance containing cocaine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Rahul Agarwal, District of New Jersey, prosecuted the case.