Woman caught with more than 4.5kg of narcotic plant at Dubai airport

She was arrested on April 13 after hiding the drugs inside banana leaves

June 8th, 2016 -- Yemen -- 
The Qat market in al-Mansoura, while it was free from sellers.
Photo Credit: Mohmmed Alqalisi for The National  
khat *** Local Caption ***  Image-1.jpeg

A Ugandan woman was found with 4.5 kilograms of qat leaves in her possession at Dubai International Airport.

Qat is a flowering plant native to Ethiopia. It is said to cause excitement, loss of appetite, and euphoria when ingested.

The World Health Organisation classifies it as a drug that, if abused, can cause mild psychological dependence.

Customs officers became suspicious when a cardboard box belonging to the woman looked extremely heavy.

Judges at Dubai Criminal Court were told the woman denied any wrongdoing when asked to declare if she was carrying illegal items.

“We searched the box and found bananas inside,” said a customs officer.

“There were many banana leaves rolled tightly and when we unfolded them, we found the qat leaves.”

The tourist, 20, was detained early in the morning of April 13 after arriving at the airport. She was also given a drugs test and the results were negative.

In court, the woman denied the charge of possessing and smuggling drugs.

A sentence will be passed on October 10.

Updated: August 24th 2021, 5:44 AM