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3rd Delta employee arrested on drug charges

A fugitive Delta Air Lines employee, charged in an alleged scheme to smuggle drugs from Mexico through Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, was arrested Tuesday in Florida.

Luis Marroquin, 35, of Atlanta, was arrested without incident by federal agents at a house in Coral Springs, Fla., according to federal officials in Atlanta.

Marroquin's girlfriend, Stephanie Baxter of Atlanta, was arrested and charged with accessory after the fact.

According to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Atlanta, Baxter was concealing Marroquin's whereabouts and attempting to help him flee to Guatemala, where she planned to join him later.

Baxter was arrested Monday as she and an unidentified person attempted to load Marroquin's motorcycle onto a pickup truck at her apartment complex on Canterbury Road in Atlanta. Baxter planned to sell the motorcycle and send the money to Marroquin to help him flee the country, the complaint alleges. The person helping Baxter was questioned and released.

Marroquin, Carlos R. Springer, 41, of Hampton and Kelvin Rondon, 27, of Atlanta were indicted last week on charges of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute methamphetamine and heroin. Springer and Rondon were arrested last week.

The three men are accused of trying to smuggle the drugs, valued at over $600,000, into the country via a commercial airline flight from Mexico.

U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said a Delta agent found a piece of unclaimed luggage on a baggage carousel on Jan. 13 with a tag corresponding to Flight 364 from Mexico City.

Customs and Border Protection agents inspected the luggage and found multiple packages of meth and heroin, Yates said.

Springer, the supervisor of the ramp employees who unloaded the luggage from Flight 364, was interviewed by federal agents, who searched his cellphone and found incriminating text messages between him and Marroquin, Yates said.

The charges carry a maximum sentence of life in prison and a fine of up to $10 million, the U.S. Attorney's Office said. The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Attorney's Office, Homeland Security, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Delta Air Lines Security.