Canning Town man jailed for smuggling cocaine into the UK from St Lucia
- Credit: Archant
A crown court security guard from Canning Town has been jailed for smuggling two kilos of cocaine into the UK.
Hugh Barrington Wilson, 60, whose actual address has never been proven, was held as he left Gatwick Airport after arriving from St Lucia on July 12 last year.
Croydon Crown Court heard Wilson was stopped with 50-year-old Orville Campbell by National Crime Agency (NCA) officers working on a surveillance operation.
The pair had purposely been allowed to clear customs by Border Force officers before they were stopped as they were about to board a train.
Officers seized £66,000 worth of the class A drug, which was 53per cent pure and had a street value of £180,000, concealed in a secret compartment in Wilson’s suitcase.
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In an interview after his arrest Wilson admitted that he worked as a private security guard at a crown court in London.
This was backed up by an identity card found in his possession.
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Both denied any wrongdoing but were convicted of importing class A drugs.
Wilson was jailed for seven years and Campbell, who claimed to live in Edmonton, was given nine.
Steve McIntyre, from the NCA’s border policing command, said: “Our surveillance operation led to the arrest and conviction of two men who were key links in the chain of drug supply.
“Cocaine fuels organised crime, violence and exploitation on the streets of the UK.
“In preventing this consignment from making it to the streets we have prevented further criminality and taken the opportunity for further profit away from those involved.”
Sue Young, Border Force South Director, added: “When the men passed through border control they must have thought their smuggling attempt had succeeded, but they were unaware that we were one step ahead of them.
“This case is testament to the close working relationship between Border Force and the NCA which is crucial in bringing offenders to justice.”