Woman Caught Trying To Smuggle Meth In Dreamcatchers

By David Konow 12/22/16

The dreamcatchers contained 1.6 pounds of meth.

dreamcatchers blowing in the wind.

When it comes to smuggling drugs, law enforcement have probably come across every way imaginable of hiding narcotics without detection—but that certainly doesn’t stop anyone from trying to come up with new ways of concealing them. Now, a woman has been arrested for trying to smuggle methamphetamine into the United States by hiding the drug in dreamcatchers, a decorative "dream snare" in some Native American cultures that is believed to protect people from nightmares.

As the Associated Press reports, a 25-year-old woman from Nuevo Casas Grandes, Mexico, was stopped at the border in Columbus, New Mexico, last Sunday when her dreamcatchers caught the attention of a drug-sniffing dog. The woman had six dreamcatchers in her 2000 Dodge Neon, featuring the traditional feathers and woven netting, which is supposed to filter a person’s bad dreams while they sleep.

Once the rings of the dreamcatchers were taken apart, authorities discovered a liquid that tested positive for meth. (In some Native cultures, the ring of the dreamcatcher symbolizes strength and unity.) A report on KFOX 14 states that the smuggled dreamcatchers contained 1.6 pounds of meth.

The 25-year-old woman, whose name was not released to the press by the authorities, was traveling with her two young daughters, aged one and eight, who were then turned over to a relative by Department of Homeland Security agents.

Robert Reza, a port of entry agent, told the Albuquerque Journal, “This is one of the most unusual smuggling episodes we have ever encountered.” This may indeed be the first time that controlled substances have been smuggled inside the traditional Native American symbol. “Smugglers will try to conceal their drug loads in everyday items like soft drink cans, framed artwork and other seemingly innocent items,” Reza continued. “Customs and Border Protection utilizes numerous inspection techniques that help identify and stop these shipments.”

While this case is certainly one of the oddest drug-smuggling attempts that border officials have encountered lately, the AP also cited another bizarre drug bust that occurred in June when a 19-year-old male was busted for trying to come over the border with $3,000 worth of meth disguised as tamales.

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In addition to contributing for The Fix, David Konow has also written for Esquire, Deadline, LA Weekly, Village Voice, The Wrap, and many other publications and websites. He is also the author of the three decade history of heavy metal, Bang Your Head (Three Rivers Press), and the horror film history Reel Terror (St Martins Press). Find David on LinkedIn and Facebook.