Cannabis swallower jailed

A SPANISH man who attempted to smuggle cannabis worth an estimated �3,000 into the UK through Stansted Airport has been jailed for six months.

Juan Jose Alvarez Garcia, 35, pleaded guilty to a charge of importing a Class B drug when he appeared at Uxbridge Magistrates Court yesterday (February 29).

He had been stopped by UK Border Agency officers when he arrived on a flight from Seville in the early hours of last Thursday morning (February 23).

Alvarez Garcia appeared nervous and was visibly shaking. When tests on his luggage and shoes returned positive traces of cocaine he was arrested on suspicion of being involved in the importation of controlled drugs.

He refused permission for an X-ray to be carried out and was taken into UK Border Agency detention where he began to pass packages containing cannabis resin.

Peter Avery, assistant director for the UK Border Agency’s Criminal and Financial Investigation team, said: “The concealment technique used by this individual shows the lengths to which some people will go in an attempt to avoid detection by our officers.

“This man was taking a big risk for potentially little reward and is now paying a high price with the loss of his liberty.

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“Let this case serve as a warning to others, we have the ability to thwart your smuggling attempts and bring you to justice.”

There are specialist Criminal and Financial Investigation teams across the country that work to identify those involved in smuggling and immigration crime, be they the smuggler or wider criminal gang.

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