Polish “drug mule” arrested at Stansted Airport gets four year sentence
- Credit: Archant
A POLISH man who swallowed 100 packages of heroin in an attempt to smuggle them into the UK through Stansted Airport has been jailed.
Robert Michal Budych, 43, of Srem in Poland, was sentenced to four and a half years imprisonment when he pleaded guilty at Isleworth Crown Court on Thursday (24 January) to attempting to import a Class A drug.
Budych was stopped by Border Force officers at 9:05pm on 16 November last year when he arrived at Stansted on a flight from Dusseldorf in Germany.
Tests on his mobile phone revealed traces of heroin and when questioned Budych admitted that he had visited South America three months earlier.
He was arrested on suspicion of drug smuggling and taken into Border Force detention where he subsequently passed 100 packages of heroin. The drugs had an estimated street value of £40,000.
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Peter Avery, of Border Force, said: “The sentence handed out sends a strong deterrent message to anyone thinking of smuggling drugs into the UK. We have robust controls in place at all our ports and airports. We will catch you and you will pay with your liberty.
“The case also highlights the grim reality of drug smuggling. It is a reminder to people who would abuse illegal substances that this is often how the goods reach them, hidden inside desperate drugs mules.
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“Border Force is at the forefront of the fight to stop drugs, weapons, other contraband and illegal immigrants entering the UK and our officers are on constant alert to keep them out of the country.”
Border Force officers use hi-tech search equipment to combat immigration crime and detect banned and restricted goods that smugglers attempt to bring into the country.
They use an array of search techniques including sniffer dogs, carbon dioxide detectors, heartbeat monitors and scanners - as well as visual searches - to find well-hidden stowaways, illegal drugs, firearms and cigarettes which would otherwise end up causing harm to local people, businesses and communities.
Anyone with information about activity they suspect may be linked to drug smuggling can call the smuggling hotline on 0800 59 5000.