Dumb Criminal of the Week: The Brazilian Transvestite Who Hid Cocaine Inside His Prosthetic Butt

Crime
A blog about murder, theft, and other wickedness.
March 21 2013 5:35 PM

Dumb Criminal of the Week: The Brazilian Transvestite Who Hid Cocaine Inside His Prosthetic Butt

Cocaine
Bags filled with cocaine.

Photo by ERNESTO BENAVIDES/AFP/Getty Images

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Name: Unidentified Brazilian transvestite

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Crime: Drug smuggling.

Fatal mistake: Having the wrong kind of junk in his trunk.

The circumstances: From the invaluable foreign-language news translation site Worldcrunch comes the ridiculous story of a Brazilian transvestite who attempted to smuggle 1.7 kilograms worth of cocaine onto a Portugal-bound flight by stashing the drugs inside his prosthetic butt. (I could end the story right there—good night, everybody!—but I’ll soldier on.) This wasn’t the worst idea, I suppose. If you’ve been to an airport lately, you know that there are a lot of fat-bottomed travelers out there. What’s one more bulging rear?

Unfortunately, this man wasn’t in America, where our asses have been shaped through a national regimen of Big Gulps and sitting, but in Brazil, whose population consists entirely of soccer players and supermodels. It’s the sort of place where a big butt might attract some attention, especially if that big butt is attached to a presumably nervous drug-smuggling transvestite. The Worldcrunch story notes that Brazilian police had already been tipped off to the scheme before making the arrest, but, really, they probably would have noticed something even without the inside information. You don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to sense there’s some funny business surrounding a sweaty, nervous transvestite leaking white powder from his curiously protuberant rear.

The name of the game in drug running is discretion. You do not want to attract undue attention to your illegal antics. And maybe it’s a sad comment on the state of our society, but transvestites tend to attract more than their fair share of gawks and glances even when they’re not engaged in international drug trafficking. Putting cocaine in your butt isn’t going to make you less noticeable.

How he could have been a lot smarter: This is an easy one: Don’t smuggle drugs onto international flights. Just don’t do it. If you absolutely must smuggle drugs, stash them somewhere other than a fake butt.

How he could have been a little smarter: He could’ve worn a decoy prosthetic butt over the coke-laden prosthetic butt.

How he could have been a little stupider: “I’d like to check this suspicious-looking prosthetic butt, please.”

How he could have been a lot stupider: He could’ve duct-taped the drugs to the outside of his pants.

Ultimate Dumbness Ranking (UDR): This guy was dumb because he was sloppy. In December, I wrote about an ill-fated drug mule who attempted to evade detection by implanting small bags of cocaine inside her breasts. While that strategy was ultimately flawed, you had to give the woman credit for committing to the bit. Compared to her, this guy wasn’t even trying. Drug-running is dangerous, and if you want to get away with it, you have to give it your best effort. You can’t do it half-assed. 7 out of 10 for the drug-running transvestite.

Justin Peters is a writer for Slate. He is working on a book about Aaron Swartz, copyright, and the rise of “free culture.” Email him at justintrevett@fastmail.fm.

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