Pacific

Aussie's arrest in Colombia aims light on foreign drug mules

The family of an Australian woman arrested in Colombia for trying to board a flight with almost 6 kilograms of cocaine is mounting a campaign to defend her against what they consider trumped-up charges.

Cassandra Sainsbury was arrested April 12 at Bogota's international airport after an X-ray machine detected the cocaine hidden in her luggage.

Her family contends she was set up. The case has garnered media attention in Australia and her family has raised almost $2,000 to end Sainsbury's ordeal in what her sister calls a "corrupt country."

As tourism to Colombia has boomed over the past decade Colombia's drug cartels are increasingly recruiting foreigners to smuggle cocaine out of the country. Police said 19 foreign drug mules have been arrested this year alone.