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Key witness in murder trial of prison fugitive says she lied to feds about drug smuggling

A key witness in the New Mexico murder trial of a prison fugitive has acknowledged that she lied to federal prosecutors about her efforts to smuggle drugs into two Arizona prisons.

Casslyn Welch, the cousin and girlfriend of defendant John McCluskey, testified Wednesday that she smuggled heroin and marijuana in dozens of color-coded balloons that she sometimes hid in a body cavity.

McCluskey is on trial for federal carjacking and murder charges in the August 2010 abduction and killing of Gary and Linda Haas of Tecumseh, Okla..

The slayings occurred three days after Welch said she helped McCluskey and two other inmates escape from a privately run, medium security prison near Kingman, Ariz..

One of the inmates was caught a day later in Colorado, but Welch, McCluskey and his former prison bunkmate Tracy Province sparked a nationwide manhunt.

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