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3 South African women held in Brazil
28/06/2005

Sao Paulo, Brazil - Police have arrested three South African women accused of trying to leave Brazil with nearly 30kg of cocaine stashed in their suitcases, authorities said on Monday. Stela Khumalo, Patricia Motsoeneng and Roberta Putteing were taken into custody on Saturday night at Sao Paulo's international airport as they were preparing to board a flight to Johannesburg, the federal police said in a statement.

An X-ray machine detected 3.9kg of the drug in Khumalo's hand luggage and when police realised she was travelling with Motsoeneng and Putteing they opened their suitcases too and found an additional 25.8kg, the statement said.

The three women face up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

News24/AP

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