McClatchy DC: When a Polish man collapsed at Miami International Airport, he was rushed to the hospital — where doctors removed half a kilo of cocaine from his belly. That’s more than a pound of the illegal drug.
In all, surgeons found 53 small rubber sacks inside the stomach of Waldemar Wojtczak, 45, who nearly died from ingesting the narcotics. The pellet-sized sacks were immediately handed over to Miami-Dade narcotics detectives, who had donned scrubs and witnessed the procedure inside the operating room at Hialeah Hospital.
Wojtczak has recovered and was formally charged Monday with cocaine trafficking and the rare state charge of using commercial transport while committing a felony. Through a Polish interpreter, he pleaded not guilty on Monday at his arraignment.
So-called “drug mules” — airline passengers who ingest drugs, usually from Latin America — are far from new in South Florida, although investigators believe their use has waned in recent years.