A DEWSBURY man has been jailed for his part in a cocaine smuggling plot.
Patrick Desmond Roddy, 52, of School Lane was sentenced to eight years after he was caught trying to smuggle £160,000 of the drug into the country from France.
Roddy and his accomplice Shaun Anthony Wright, 39, of Foster Gate, Selby were both caught with 1kg of the cocaine and 1kg of cannabis at Dover Docks last year.
The pair, both unemployed, were caught when their Mercedes van was stopped by UK Border Agency officers on June 16.
The van’s manifesto said it was carrying vehicle parts but when officers searched it they found the drugs folded in to the load’s tarpaulin.
Their total estimated street value is £161,920.
The pair claimed they were approached while on an outbound ferry and asked to pick up a load at Dunkirk.
They said they had picked up the drugs at a farm near Breda, Holland, but claimed they had not known what was in the load.
But at Canterbury Crown Court the duo both pleaded guilty and were each sentenced to eight years for smuggling the cocaine and 18 months for the cannabis, to run concurrently.
Paul Booth, Assistant Director, Border Force South, said: “We welcome these long sentences which reflect the seriousness of the offence committed by these two men and the robustness of the controls the UK Border Agency has in place to protect our borders
“Illegal drugs not only wreck the lives of individuals, but also their families and the wider community.
“Last year the UK Border Agency seized drugs worth more than £237 million and we will continue to strive to protect our borders and disrupt supply routes.”
The UK Border Agency was launched in April 2008 by the Home Office.
It brings together hundreds of specially trained officers equipped with immigration and customs powers into a single force securing the UK border.
Officers use hi-tech search equipment to combat immigration crime and detect banned and restricted goods.