A NIGERIAN man has been given a six-year prison sentence for attempting to smuggle £45,000 worth of cocaine through Birmingham International Airport.
Edwin Atuegwu Mbonu was intercepted by officers from the UK Border Agency when he arrived in the country last month. The flight, travelling from Mbonu’s home country, touched down at BIA on June 7.
When officers searched the 54-year-old’s luggage they found 60 pellets of cocaine hidden inside tubs of hand cream. Mbonu had swallowed a further 25 pellets.
All together the pellets amounted to around one kilo. Once the Class A drug had been cut by dealers it would have doubled or even trebled in value.
Mike O’Grady, from HM Revenue & Customs, said: “It never fails to amaze me that people take such huge risks with their health and freedom to try and make what they think is easy money.
“This shows, yet again, we will catch and prosecute anyone attempting to smuggle drugs through our regional airports - our stance is one of zero tolerance.”
Mbonu had pleaded guilty to the drug smuggling offences and was sentenced last week at Manchester Crown Court. He will be deported once he has finished his sentence.
Anyone with information about smuggling should call a hotline on 0800 59 5000.