Mint Employee on Trial for Smuggling $180,000 of Gold
Former Royal Canadian Mint employee, Leston Lawrence is on trial for apparently smuggling $180,000 of gold by placing it in his rectum. It was reported that the man hid the gold in his rectum in order to get by security. This has resulted in charges of theft, laundering, possession of stolen property, and breach of trust against Lawrence.
Kelly Egan, reporting the case for The Ottawa Citizen, said he could not believe his ears when he heard about the case last year. Egan said, “The nuggets are about the size of a small muffin.” He said that most everyone working in this area must pass through fairly sophisticated metal detectors. Lawrence did set off the metal detector more than any other employee. When this happens, according to Egan, an employee then must go through a secondary search with a hand-held wand. On each of those searches he passed the secondary test.
Egan said that security people have testified that they have tested this on a human being. When the person being tested went through the metal detector it went off. However, when the person received the wand test it didn’t go off. He said this was evidence to them that this could easily have been the way the gold had left The Mint. There has also been some circumstantial evidence in the case. Egan said the man did have Vaseline in his locker.
The Mint has released a statement saying they have taken a number of steps to improve security. This improvement includes adding a number of high-definition cameras