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18 pounds of cocaine found hidden in commercial plane at Dulles

Thursday - 8/11/2011, 8:26pm  ET

WASHINGTON -- Customs officers confiscated 18 pounds of cocaine hidden in the cargo area of a commercial plane that arrived Wednesday at Dulles International Airport.

The drugs, worth $580,000 in street value, were sniffed out by a Customs and Border Protection dog and found concealed behind a cargo hold panel in the Avianca Airlines plane that originated in Bogota, Colombia, according to a news release.

The cocaine was contained in seven, taped packages.

"Nefarious narcotics organizations continue to leverage all means to smuggle their deadly poison to the United States, even placing narcotics aboard unsuspecting commercial aircraft," stated Christopher Hess, Customs and Border Protection port director in Washington D.C.

Federal authorities are investigating the incident.

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