London

South African Airways crew member on smuggling charge

  • 28 June 2010
  • From the section London

A member of South African Airways' cabin crew has appeared in court, charged with trying to smuggle 3kg (6.6lbs) of cocaine on a flight into London's Heathrow Airport.

Elphia Dlamini, from Cape Town, was held after a random search.

The 42-year-old was remanded in custody until 6 July by Uxbridge magistrates.

The airline has said it is consulting security staff, police and Interpol to try to deter employees from trying to smuggle illegal substances.

Drugs were found in crew members' luggage on two occasions last year.

Security checks

On a flight from Johannesburg to Heathrow in January 2009, 50kg (110lbs) of cannabis and 4kg (8.8lbs) of cocaine were discovered.

A month later customs officers uncovered 5kg (11lb) of cocaine in suitcases at the airport.

On each occasion, 15 crew members were detained by police and were later bailed.

Ms Dlamini was detained when security checks were conducted on Saturday.

They followed the arrival of South African Airways flight SA236 from Johannesburg.

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