3 arrested over smuggling of drugs hidden in Snow White dwarf dolls

©Kyodo News

A Malaysian national and two of his daughters have been arrested over attempts to smuggle illegal drugs into Japan by hiding them in ceramic dolls of characters from the Disney film "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," police and customs said Tuesday.

The Japanese authorities have confiscated the stimulant drugs, weighing about 6 kilograms and estimated to have a street value of around 384 million yen ($3.64 million), that were concealed in dwarf and apple ceramics.

They believe Wong Siewmin, 53, his eldest daughter Chinatsu Ebisawa, 36, and his third daughter, 18, whose name is being withheld because she is a minor, played the role of transporters in a smuggling scheme.

The ceramic dwarf dolls arrived at Narita airport in Chiba Prefecture, east of Tokyo, on Feb. 6. Customs officers found the drugs concealed in 10 of them two days later, and replaced them with other objects to pursue those involved in the case.

The three, all residents of Chiba Prefecture, received the ceramic dolls stuffed with different materials on Saturday at Ebisawa's house in Urayasu, the police said.

They then apprehended the family as they received the goods and later confiscated 10 apple-shaped ceramics containing the drugs at Wong's home in Ichikawa, also in Chiba Prefecture.

Wong has admitted to the attempted drug smuggling, with the police quoting him as saying he was supposed to hand over the stimulants and receive 2.4 million yen in reward.

But the daughters have denied the allegations, saying they had no knowledge of the contents, the police added.