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Filipino accused of flying into HK with ketamine in snack packs

29 January 2019

Ketamine in snack packs allegedly seized from suspect

By The SUN

A 27-year-old Filipino male was charged at the weekend in Kowloon City Court of drug trafficking after he was reportedly found with 4.2 kilos of suspected ketamine disguised as snack packs in his luggage when he arrived at Hong Kong International Airport on Jan 24.

The Customs and Excise Department estimated the market value of the confiscated drug at $2 million.

The suspect, Richard Marc A. Benoza, was charged before Magistrate Woo Huey-fang on Saturday. He is said to be a Hong Kong identity card holder and worked as a bartender.

Benoza’s lawyer applied for cash bail of $2,000, but Magistrate Woo refused the application. The defendant was remanded in custody and no plea was taken.

The case was adjourned until Mar 27 for the next hearing at West Kowloon Court.

The Customs Department said Benoza was a passenger on a flight that arrived from Bangkok on Thursday afternoon.

During customs clearance, officers found 17 packets of suspected ketamine (now often used in date rape drugs), wrapped as snacks in his luggage. He was then arrested.

Also on Jan. 24, domestic helper Calin Baybayan appeared in West Kowloon Court for another hearing of her drug trafficking case. She was arrested in November after taking delivery of an air parcel which supposedly contained toys but was found to contain drugs.

Trafficking in a dangerous drug is a serious offense in Hong Kong, for which the maximum penalty is life imprisonment and a fine of up to $5 million.

The government has been urging the public to report any suspected drug trafficking activities to Customs’ 24-hour hotline 2545 6182 or its dedicated crime-reporting email account (


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