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Feds Seize Five Firearms And $850,000 Cash From Dominican Republic Private Plane Landing At Isla Grande Airport In Puerto Rico

LOT OF ‘SPLAININ’ TO DO: David Diaz of the United States will have to explain why it is that he had five firearms and $850,000 cash on him when the plane he chartered from the Dominican Republic landed in Puerto Rico. Diaz was advised of his rights in court on Wednesday in San Juan.

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SAN JUAN — Federal authorities have seized more than $850,000 in cash and five firearms at an airport in Puerto Rico’s capital.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection said Wednesday that its officers seized the items during a routine inspection of a private plane bound for Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.

Authorities say the money and firearms were hidden inside paint buckets and a suitcase belonging to one of two passengers aboard.

The passenger identified as David Diaz from the U.S. was arrested and faces charges including bulk cash smuggling.

His state and hometown were not immediately known.

Officials say the seizure occurred at the Isla Grande airport in San Juan.

WIDE OPEN: The runway landing for Isla Grande Airport in Puerto Rico.

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The Author

John McCarthy

John McCarthy

John McCarthy is primarily known for his investigative reporting on the U.S. Virgin Islands. A series of reports beginning in the 1990's revealed that there was everything from coliform bacteria to Cryptosporidium in locally-bottled St. Croix drinking water, according to a then-unpublished University of the Virgin Islands sampling. Another report, following Hurricane Hugo in 1989, cited a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) confidential overview that said that over 40 percent of the U.S. Virgin Islands public lives below the poverty line. The Virgin Islands Free Press is the only Caribbean news source to regularly incorporate the findings of U.S. Freedom of Information Act requests. John's articles have appeared in the BVI Beacon, St. Croix Avis, San Juan Star and Virgin Islands Daily News. He is the former news director of WSVI-TV Channel 8 on St. Croix.

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