Huffpost Crime

Carmel Rojas-Perez Arrested For Smuggling Meth In Picture Frame

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PITTSBURGH -- Customs officers found a kilogram of methamphetamine hidden in two large picture frames of religious artwork, according to a federal affidavit unsealed Friday.

The frames came from Toluca, Mexico and were delivered to a Pittsburgh store, where a man who picked them up was arrested and charged in federal court with drug smuggling.

Customs officials intercepted the package at a shipping facility in Memphis, Tenn., in late August and discovered the frames were hollow and contained long black packages filled with white powder.

A Pennsylvania state police trooper working undercover as a parcel delivery man allowed the Pittsburgh store owner to sign for the package. The store owner set it on a shelf and another man, Carmel Rojas-Perez of Pittsburgh, picked it up about four hours later, court documents said.

Rojas-Perez told authorities that a friend in Mexico sent the frames, according to the affidavit. Rojas-Perez was ordered held without bail.

His federal public defender declined comment.

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