Former JetBlue flight attendant changes plea to guilty in cocaine smuggling case

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A former JetBlue flight attendant who tried to smuggle 60 pounds of cocaine through Los Angeles International Airport changed her plea to guilty on Monday.

Former JetBlue employee Marsha Gay Reynolds appeared before a judge and pleaded guilty to a federal drug trafficking charges as part of a plea agreement.

Reynolds specifically admitted to having nearly 60 pounds of cocaine in her carry-on luggage as she tried to board a flight at LAX in March.

"She's pleaded guilty to a conspiracy count, admitting she was working with another individual to transport drugs across the United States," said Thom Mrozek of the U.S. Attorney's Office in Los Angeles.

Federal authorities said that individual paid Reynolds thousands of dollars for smuggling drugs and drug proceeds through "known crew member" access points at airports where carry-on luggage is generally not screened.

"Court papers indicate that Ms. Reynolds was working with another individual, that essentially this other individual was operating a cross-country drug-trafficking ring. One of the places that the cocaine was going to appears to be Massachusetts," Mrozek added.

Authorities said it's unknown when the drug trafficking began but continued until March of 2016, when Reynolds, a former Jamaican beauty queen, fled LAX after her luggage was going to be searched.

"Because of the sheer quantity of narcotics involved, the mandatory minimum 10-year sentence is applicable...," Mrozek shared.

Authorities believe the man Reynolds was working with fled to Jamaica using a false name.

Reynolds sentencing was scheduled for March 2017.

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