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July 3, 2012

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Tanzania Man Allegedly Ingests 100 Pellets of Heroin, Indicted for Possession with Intent to Distribute

HOUSTON – A 30-year-old Tanzanian man has been indicted for allegedly ingesting more than 100 pellets containing more than one kilogram of heroin, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Bryan Mukama Hans was arrested June 3, 2012, as he arrived at Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) in Houston.

The indictment, returned just moments ago, alleges Hans did knowingly and intentionally possess with intent to distribute one kilogram or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of heroin, a schedule I controlled substance.

“This enforcement action is an example of our commitment to protecting the traveling public while enforcing hundreds of laws,” said Jeffrey O. Baldwin Sr., director of Field Operations for Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in Houston. “We’ll take every opportunity to disrupt suspected criminal activity and deny those that seek to use our ports of entry to further their illegal activity.”

On June 3, 2012, Hans arrived at IAH in Houston aboard Qatar Airways and subsequently applied for admission to the United States with a B1/B2 tourism visa. His flight itinerary allegedly indicated he was to depart the United States en route to Tanzania via Doha, Qatar, on June 18, 2012. According to the criminal complaint filed in the case, during the inspection process, he informed CBP officers he was traveling to the United States for a family reunion in Utah. However, his travel reservation did not show domestic travel from Houston to Utah, nor did CBP officers discover any additional travel reservations for Hans to travel from Houston to Utah, according to the complaint. Follow up investigation also allegedly revealed there was a reunion scheduled, but that it was not set to occur until more than two weeks after he was set to depart the United States. Agents also uncovered several inconsistencies in his statements and observed physical behavior consistent with deception. 

After Hans consented to an X-ray of his abdomen, CBP officers transported him to the Northwest Medical Center in Houston. Shortly after the exam, Hans allegedly passed approximately 22 plastic-wrapped pellets from his body, one of which was field tested and revealed the presence of heroin. The exam allegedly revealed the presence of foreign bodies within his digestive tract.

Hans remained under the care of medical professionals until he had passed all foreign bodies from his digestive tract and was medically discharged. He will remain in custody pending further criminal proceedings.

The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and CBP. Assistant United States Attorney Richard Magness is prosecuting the case.

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