An American woman was arrested on Wednesday for attempting to smuggle a newborn baby out of the Philippines by hiding the child in her carry-on luggage, officials said.
Jennifer Erin Talbot, 43, attempted to smuggle the six-day-old baby out of Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila, NBC News reported. She was ultimately bound for Columbus, Ohio, U.S, according to the report.
During the security check, the baby was discovered inside her hand luggage, the outlet reported.
“[The] infant was hidden in the oversized belt bag and [she] did not declare nor present to the immigration inspector during departure formalities,” Bureau of Immigration officials told CNN Philippines.
Grafton Medina of National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) said;
“We worked in coordination with US-based airline who helped us apprehend the passenger at the boarding gate,” Medina said.
“She would not have a baby in a hand-carry to be x-rayed. But she hid it at check-in and when she passed immigration counters, and then at the other x-ray to the boarding gate, then she showed it. That’s the time we were able to apprehend her, when she passed through the next x-ray,” Medina added.
Talbot told officials she was the child’s aunt but had no documents to prove the relationship, The Post reported.
More details are expected to be revealed about the case, but the National Bureau of Investigation said they will likely file child trafficking charges against her, according to NBC News.