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3 Massachusetts women charged with smuggling pot over border

Three Massachusetts women who allegedly attempted to smuggle marijuana into the United States at the Lewiston-Queenston Bridge were arrested Monday by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office.

Prosecutors said Briha K. Younger, 25, 28-year-old Jenae R. Johnson – both of Boston, Mass. – and Micaela G. Ratcliffe, 28, of Dorchester, Mass., were each charged with smuggling of goods into the U.S., importation of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance. The charges carry a maximum 20-year prison sentence.

All three women gave negative declarations when asked if there was any marijuana or other illegal contraband in the vehicle in which they were traveling.

Ratcliffe was found to have a record for a prior incident involving travel with marijuana, prompting a secondary inspection referral for the women and their vehicle.

Officers found multiple rolled joints in Younger's purse and, inside the vehicle, commercially packaged marijuana that had been lawfully purchased at marijuana dispensaries in Canada, prosecutors said.

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