PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- A California man was arrested on Friday after officers seized 72 lbs. of marijuana from baggage being loaded onto an Ireland-bound flight at Philadelphia International Airport.
The traveler, 34-year-old Bryan Nelson Gonzalez Rodriguez, faces felony charges of narcotics possession with intent to distribute, officials say.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers say they were inspecting luggage when an x-ray exam revealed anomalies in two suitcases. A narcotics dog also alerted the same two suitcases.
When officers inspected the bags, they found several black vacuum-sealed packs of marijuana.
Officials say the total amount of marijuana found was 72 lbs. and three ounces. The street value is estimated to be about $160,000 in the U.S.
In Ireland, where the luggage was being flown to, officials say the street price could go for about $400 an ounce, or $460,000 total for the load.
After discovering the marijuana, officials took Rodriguez and the marijuana into custody.
"It is unusual to encounter travelers today who attempt to smuggle bulk amounts of marijuana in passenger baggage to overseas destinations. Bulk marijuana smuggling remains illegal, and Customs and Border Protection officers will continue to deliver consequences when we encounter it," said Rene Ortega, the acting area port director for CBP's Area Port of Philadelphia.