DAILYMAIL.CO.UK — OCT. 13, 2012 — A woman smuggled £5million of pure cocaine into the UK hidden on the back of a horse.
Emma McCue-Smith, 36, arranged for ten kilos of the uncut class A drug to be transported inside a specially designed blanket after buying the horse from Holland.
Police only discovered the drugs when the horse arrived in Kent and stable workers noticed the blanket was ‘very heavy’.
McCue-Smith has been jailed for six years at Canterbury Crown Court after she was found guilty of conspiracy to supply ten kilos of a class A drug.
Detectives investigating the case said it was one of the most ‘novel’ ways of smuggling drugs they had come across.
Staff were preparing the horse for the rest of the journey to McCue-Smith’s home in Manchester when they looked inside the blanket and found packets of white powder.
She was caught when police linked her to the crime using mobile phone records.
Det Con Friend said: ‘In this instance the transport company used had absolutely no knowledge that they were importing a lot more than they were contracted to. As soon as they made the discovery they contacted the police.
‘This was a complex investigation which scrutinised mobile phone data.
Stable workers found ten packets of white powder hidden inside the heavy horse blanket
Stable staff in Kent became suspicious when they lifted the heavy blanket. Inside they found ten kilos of pure cocaine and alerted police
‘We were able to prove Emma McCue-Smith was the owner of the number associated with the transport of the horse and its equipment and therefore the jury had no other option but to find her guilty of conspiracy to supply cocaine.
‘This was a significant seizure and prevented a huge quantity of illegal drugs making its way onto the streets.’
The horse was brought into the country from Holland through the Channel Tunnel in April, 2010 and was stabled in Hythe, Kent.
Staff became suspicious when they felt the weight of the rug, which was draped over the animal.
McCue-Smith was arrested seven months later by the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate and jailed on Wednesday.
A spokesman for Kent Police said today: ‘Closer inspection found specially designed pockets in the inner rug was concealing 10 packets of a white powder.
‘The powder was analysed and later confirmed to be pure uncut cocaine with a street value of over £5million.