U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at Chicago O’Hare International Airport seized nearly 70 pounds of opium Tuesday.
Authorities arrested three women: Pa Yang, Mai Vue Vang, and True Thao. All of them are U.S. citizens returning from Laos. They’re accused of smuggling the drugs in three separate bags. Customs officials say they discovered nearly 500 packets of opium hidden in bags of tea leaves.
Opium is one of the key ingredients in the production of heroin.
The three passengers were turned over to Chicago Police.