The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Woman accused of smuggling more than 10,000 diamonds inside her body

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TORONTO - Border officials say they have charged a woman they allege tried to smuggle more than 10,000 rough diamonds inside her body.

The Canada Border Services Agency says Helena Freida Bodner was arrested Feb. 3 at Toronto's Pearson airport, but she appeared in court Friday.

Spokeswoman Antonella DiGirolamo says Bodner carried the gems — about 1,500 carats worth — "internally," though she would not elaborate.

Bodner is described as a "foreign national" and the agency says it is still investigating the diamonds' provenance.

CBSA Regional Director Goran Vragovic says the seizure bolsters the agency's "ongoing efforts to combat smuggling and fight global conflict."

DiGirolamo says the evidence has been turned over to the RCMP.

Bodner is charged under the Customs Act with making false statements, unlawful possession of prohibited goods and smuggling.

She is due back in court next month.

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