A divided New York appeals panel has ruled that 39 bags of illegal drugs seized from a suspect should have been admitted into evidence on the strength of the two arresting officers’ testimony that they had been able to smell the drug, phencyclidine, or PCP.

In reversing the trial court’s ruling suppressing the seizure of 20 bags of crack and 19 bags of PCP, Justice David B. Saxe wrote for the majority that the trial court judge, Manhattan Supreme Court Justice James A. Yates, had improperly found that the police officers’ testimony was contradicted by the defense’s expert witness.