A 64-year-old drugs smuggler, who risked his life swallowing 300g of cocaine, has been handed a four-year jail sentence after being detained at Manchester Airport.
Anthony Durrad, of Llanelian Road, Old Colwyn, Wales, was caught when a body scan revealed he had £48,000 worth of drugs in his stomach after arriving on a flight from Jamaica on December 9.
The Welshman pleaded guilty to attempting to import a Class A drug at Manchester Crown Court on March 2.
Rob Miles, from the NCA’s border investigation team at Manchester Airport, said: “This is an extremely dangerous method of bringing drugs in to the UK.
“The risk of one of the packages bursting – and causing death – is huge.
“What is particularly tragic is that often the individuals doing this are taking terrible risks on behalf of someone else.”
Mr Miles admitted that Durrad had done wrong but stressed that not everyone involved in the industry is there by choice.
“They are committing a crime but in many cases they are also victims themselves of the organised criminals behind the trade,” he added.
“At the other end of the chain, people who buy these drugs need to think about where they have come from and how they got into the UK.
“Please don’t do this-the risks simply aren’t worth it. Even if you survive you will go to prison.”
Mr Durrad’s imprisonment is the latest in a number of cocaine related arrests in Manchester as authorities continue to crackdown on the industry.
Tony McMullin, Director of Border Force North, was quick to praise the team who caught Durrad and promised to continue to catch drug smugglers.
“This case shows the lights smugglers will go to in their attempts to bring Class A drugs into the UK,” he said.
“Border Force officers, like those who made this seizure, play a crucial role in protecting UK borders from drugs and other contraband.
“Working with our colleagues in the National Crime Agency we are determined to do all we can to prevent drug traficcking and put those responsible behind bars.”
The NCA’s border policing command received the cocaine after it was recovered from Durrad.