A drug dealer has been jailed after he was found to have swallowed 93 packets of cocaine to smuggle it into the UK.
Henry Michael Penijn, 36, was found to have drugs worth £80,000 – equivalent to around 1,600 wraps – in his stomach after he was stopped at Gatwick Airport in December. They were found to be 64% pure.
He admitted swallowing the cocaine in the Dominican Republic but did not give any reasons why.
Penijn, who lives in the Netherlands, was sentenced to four years in prison when he appeared at Lewes Crown Court earlier this week having pleaded guilty to importing class A drugs.
Branch Commander Mark McCormack said: ‘Organised crime groups need couriers like Penijn to bring their illicit commodities into the UK.
’93 packages of cocaine is a significant amount for one person to swallow, and for that reason we suspect that this may not have been Penijn’s first time.
‘It is also an extremely dangerous method to use. If any one of those packages had split or burst the consequences would likely have been fatal.
‘The class A drugs trade is almost always linked to serious and organised crime, with local communities and the people within them suffering as a result.
‘Shortly after being stopped at the border Penijn admitted that he had swallowed more than 90 packages of cocaine, though he gave no explanation as to why he’d done it.
‘After having the drugs tested, NCA investigators found the cocaine was 64 per cent pure, and would have been worth in excess of £80,000 if cut and sold on British streets.’
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