Woman jailed after drug-smuggling plot

THE EVIDENCE -- the seized cocaine
THE EVIDENCE -- the seized cocaine

A DRUG-smuggler from Bulwell has been jailed for her part in importing cocaine, with an estimated street-value of £250,000, from South America.

Emma Morley (36), of Walnut Tree Gardens, Snape Wood, pleaded guilty at Nottingham Crown Court in November to a charge of being concerned in the importation of class-A drugs.

Now, after re-appearing at the same court for sentencing, she has been sent to prison for four years.

Co-accused Hakeem Balogun (29), of Russell Road, Hyson Green, was found guilty of the same charge. He was jailed for eight years.

At the end of a seven-day trial, a third defendant, Terence Morley (41), of Kentwood Road, Sneinton, was cleared of being concerned in the supply of cocaine.

The court heard that the high-purity drugs, weighing just under half a kilo, were sent from Quito, the capital of Ecuador.

They were in the lining of a package containing children’s clothes and destined for an address in Sneinton. The cocaine was found last July.

The package was intercepted by the UK Border Agency on its arrival in the country and police arrested Balogun, Terence Morley and Emma Morley shortly afterwards.

The investigating officer in the case, Det Con Sarah Mason, of Nottinghamshire police’s crime and intelligence directorate, said:

“The arrest and conviction of Balogun and Emma Morley is the culmination of an operation which has prevented a significant quantity of cocaine finding its way on to the streets of Nottingham or other towns and cities.

“We are very pleased with the sentences handed down to the two convicted defendants.

“The length of these prison terms should send out a message to all those engaged in this trade that we are determined to disrupt the distribution and sale of drugs, and to collate the evidence that will convict those responsible for importing them.”

Chris Bagley is the assistant director at the UK Border Agency.

He said: “Our officers are on constant alert for drugs, firearms and other banned substances that criminals try to smuggle in the post and which bring devastation and destruction to our communities.

“Using a combination of hi-tech scanning equipment and intelligence, we will continue to prevent illegal smuggling into the UK.

“We are pleased that the intelligence which we passed to the police after this detection has resulted in the smugglers being put behind bars for a significant length of time.

“Anyone with information about activity they suspect may be linked to drug smuggling should call our hotline on 0800 59 5000.”