New York

Men Shipped Dog to New York's JFK Airport With More Than $1 Million of Heroin: District Attorney

“It’s alleged that man’s best friend was used in an attempt to smuggle drugs into the city," district attorney says

A dog was used as a drug mule for two New York men sending more than $1 million worth of heroin to John F. Kennedy Airport, the Queens District Attorney says.

The dog, a mixed-breed Shepherd-type, was employed to help the men hide ten bricks of heroin in the false bottom of a crate sent from Puerto Rico to JFK on March 24, district attorney Richard Brown says.

“It’s alleged that man’s best friend was used in an attempt to smuggle drugs into the city," he said.

"But great police work led to the seizure of more than 10 kilograms of heroin concealed within a dog crate."

He said the men, Samuel Seabrooks, 35, of the Bronx, and Carlos Betancourt-Morales, 27, of Putnam County, were charged with drug possession and conspiracy.

The pair are accused of meeting up at a Bronx diner on Friday before taking separate cars to American Airlines Priority Parcel Services at JFK Airport.

Betancourt-Morales then went to sign for the dog -- and the heroin -- before he was stopped by police, officials say.

The next day a search warrant was executed on the crate, where the packages of heroin were discovered. The NYPD's Animal Cruelty Investigation Squad was also part of the bust.

Both defendants were arraigned Sunday night before Queens Criminal Court Judge Gia Morris.

Judge Morris set bail at $500,000 bond or $250,000 cash for each defendant. If convicted, they face up to 20 years in prison.

The dog was given to the ASPCA, the district attorney's office said.

The DA's office initially said the dog was an Avi Labrador; it now says it appears to be a male Shepherd-type. 

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