(London – NCA ) A lorry driver who hid cannabis worth £750,000 underneath a false floor in his trailer has been given a three year nine month prison term.
Croatian national Damir Gelo, 53, arrived into Dover on a ferry from Calais in the early hours of 19 January 2015.
His articulated HGV was searched and Border Force officers discovered 87 vacuum packed packages underneath fitted boards in the trailer. Each package contained a kilo of herbal cannabis.
In interviews with National Crime Agency investigators Gelo admitted he had agreed to transport the packages from Germany, getting paid 1,500 Euros for the trip. He also admitted he planned further similar smuggling runs in the future. However he claimed to believe that they were tobacco not cannabis.
Gelo eventually admitted importing class B drugs, and at Canterbury Crown Court on Thursday 30 April he was sentenced to 45 months in prison.
Matt Rivers, from the NCA’s Border Policing Command, said:
“It seems Gelo was intent on setting himself up as a professional smuggler and had he not been stopped I have no doubt he would have carried doing the same again in future.
“Working with Border Force and our other law enforcement partners we are committed to stopping organised crime groups smuggling illegal drugs into the UK.”