Death by “Snow”! A Fatal Forensic Case of Cocaine Leakage in a “Drug Mule” on Postmortem Computed and Magnetic Resonance Tomography Compared With Autopsy

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Abstract

This forensic case presents unique postmortem imaging of a “drug mule” with fatal intoxication due to cocaine leakage on postmortem computed and magnetic resonance (MR) tomography compared with autopsy.

Imaging by postmortem computed and MR tomography was performed before autopsy, histology, and toxicology were commissioned. Forensic imaging revealed 91 hyperdense, uniformly shaped body packs with signs of leakage, which was confirmed by autopsy. Postmortem MR imaging displayed the rarely described hypointense appearance of the body packs in T1- and T2-weighted sequences. Toxicology stated the dosage of cocaine intoxication as lethal.

This case provides an opportunity to image internal cocaine drug containers on postmortem computed and MR tomography. The cause of death could be determined based on imaging and the radiological morphology of these packs by both imaging methods.

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