Search

Suffolk £34m cocaine haul hidden in consignment of pineapples

08:59 19 July 2012

Trial begins over alleged £34m cocaine haul

Trial begins over alleged £34m cocaine haul

copyright of Archant © 2010 01603 772434

A consignment of pineapples was a front for a £34million cocaine smuggling operation, a court has heard.

Police swooped on a Brandon industrial unit last October and uncovered what is believed to be Suffolk’s largest police haul of Class A drugs.

Terrance Smith, 57, and Frederick Colverson, 56, were arrested and later charged with conspiring to supply cocaine.

Smith, of Ethelreda Drive, Thetford, pleaded guilty on July 6 but Colverson, of Galsworthy Avenue, London, denied the charge and his trial began at Ipswich Crown Court yesterday. David Holborn, prosecuting, said police had watched a lorry arrive in Highbury Road, Brandon, on October 31 and heard animated reactions as the cargo was opened.

“Somebody was very excited about what he’d received,” Mr Holborn added.

Officers raided the lorry and found 174kg of cocaine – with a street value of £34m – concealed in the bottom of the fruit boxes.

Mr Holborn said the swoop was made at the premises of 24/7 Import Export (Europe) Ltd, which was registered to Smith.

The prosecutor, questioning why there were allegedly no refrigeration units at the premises, added: “If you are importing pineapples to sell on and you have to leave them in units in the summer, you are not going to have many left to sell on to the public.

“The prosecution says that company and premises were set up for one reason. Not for importing pineapples but the main reason was to get cocaine into the country.

“The premises are a front for the importation of cocaine.”

Mr Holborn said the vehicles of both Colverson and Smith were found parked next to each other at a nearby unit, both with their ignition keys easily accessible.

He added: “Why did they choose to park where they did and why did they leave their keys on the windscreen?”

The trial continues.

Other news

Norwich Crown Court
picture by Adrian Judd
for EDP

A former instructor for the Army Cadet Force was jailed for two and half years for sexually assaulting a teenage cadet on a training camp, in Thetford.

Yesterday, 23:25
Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service

The A134 at Mundford was closed in both directions following a single-vehicle accident involving a motorcycle.

Thu, 19:13
GCSE results at Sprowston High School. Kelsey Andrews, left, who celebrated her birthday as well as her exam results with Alice Trett. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

GCSE results in Norfolk and Suffolk have gone up, as schools across the counties reported improvements on last year’s figures.

Thu, 08:36
Keep up to date with the latest GCSE exam results with our live map

Our live GCSE results map will show how schools across Norfolk have performed in GCSE exams compared to previous years.

Most Read

Yesterday, 23:25
Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service

The A134 at Mundford was closed in both directions following a single-vehicle accident involving a motorcycle.

Read more
Norwich Crown Court
picture by Adrian Judd
for EDP

A former instructor for the Army Cadet Force was jailed for two and half years for sexually assaulting a teenage cadet on a training camp, in Thetford.

Read more
Norwich Crown Court
Yesterday, 15:32
Jack Barber, left, in action for Fakenham Town on Saturday. Picture: TONY MILES

The players of Fakenham Town have another chance to secure their Clipbush Park future as Wayne Anderson prepares to wield the axe.

Read more
Premier Division
Thu, 19:13
GCSE results at Sprowston High School. Kelsey Andrews, left, who celebrated her birthday as well as her exam results with Alice Trett. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

GCSE results in Norfolk and Suffolk have gone up, as schools across the counties reported improvements on last year’s figures.

Read more
Friday, January 11, 2013
James Parker appearing in court in New Zealand where he admitted 49 sex charges. Photo courtesy of 3news New Zealand.

A former Norfolk teacher faces a hefty jail sentence after admitting dozens of sexual offences against school boys in New Zealand.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 22°C

min temp: 17°C

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Thetford and Brandon e-edition today E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up