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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
ANGELA DODGE

Jan. 11, 2012

PUBLIC AFFAIRS OFFICER
(713) 567-9388

Cocaine in Shoes Leads to Indictment of 19-Year-Old New Yorker

HOUSTON – A federal indictment has been returned against Brielle Latoi Orridge, 19, of the Bronx, N.Y., who was arrested at George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) in December 2011 for allegedly possessing with intent to distribute a total of 1.38 kilograms of cocaine concealed in the soles of two pairs of shoes, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today.

A federal grand jury today returned a one-count indictment just a short while ago accusing Orridge of possession with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of cocaine on Dec. 18, 2011. Released on bond, Orridge is next expected to appear for arraignment on the formal charges on a date to be set in the near future by the court.

According to allegations in the affidavit supporting the criminal complaint filed in this case, on Sunday evening, Dec. 18, 2011, Orridge arrived at IAH aboard a Continental Airlines flight from Montego Bay, Jamaica, en route to New York City. Upon her arrival, Orridge’s luggage was examined by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at which time an anomaly was observed in two pairs of shoes contained in her luggage. A canine alerted on the luggage indicating the presence of narcotics. Court documents indicate CBP agents probed the shoes and found a foreign substance which field tested positive for cocaine. The gross weight of the controlled substance was estimated at 1.38 kilograms.

If convicted of the offense charged, Orridge faces a mandatory minimum of five term of imprisonment up to 40 years. 

The investigation leading to the charges was conducted by CBP and Immigration and Customs Enforcement-Homeland Security Investigations. Assistant United States Attorney Nancy Herrera is prosecuting the case.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.