efe-epaBangkok Desk

A 71-year-old man has been arrested in Melbourne after attempting to smuggle approximately 700 grams of cocaine into Australia concealed inside children's books.

The US national was "selected for baggage examination" by border police at Melbourne International Airport after arriving from Dubai last week, according to a joint statement by the Australian Federal Police and the Australian Border Force.

Inspecting officers detected "anomalies" after two heavy children's books were x-rayed, and a white powdered substance was discovered hidden inside the reading material.

Australian Federal Police officers arrested and charged the man with importing and possessing "commercial" amounts of a controlled substance, and could face a maximum of life in jail if found guilty of the offenses.

He was remanded in custody and is due to appear before Melbourne Magistrates Court on Mar. 5, 2018.