Three Hampshire residents were convicted of a year-long drug smuggling scheme that ended with a man caught smuggling cocaine from Peru into the UK.
An investigation by the National Crime Agency found that 44-year-old Leamington drug runner Glynn Davis, along with his girlfriend and business partner, was involved in drug smuggling into the UK and made several trips to South America in 2017 and 2018.
He was stopped in Gatwick by border guards in July 2018 after arriving on a flight from Lima, Peru. During a search, two packages wrapped in foil were found in his jeans.
Together they contained a kilogram of high purity cocaine that would be worth around £80,000 after being cut up and sold at street level.
NCA investigators determined that during the trip, Davis was in contact with his 24-year-old girlfriend, Sheena Spedding, also from Leamington.
An analysis of the phone conversations showed that she arranged for many of his trips and hotels and that he sent her photos of drugs on Whatsapp.
NCA officials were also able to find evidence that the flights were paid for by a man Davis identified as his business partner, 35-year-old Lee Hollister. Messages between the two showed that Hollister was giving advice to Davis while his credit card and address were on the booking. .
A search of Hollister’s home address in Leamington turned up many items related to the drug trade, including scales and bags used to package cocaine.
Davis also made six previous trips to Lima last year, twice accompanied by Spedding. Hollister wired them £26,000 while they were there.
Further messages on his phone indicated that Davis had discussed food prices with contacts in Peru and offered to do business on a monthly basis.
Faced with evidence gathered by the NCA against them, Davis and Spedding pleaded guilty to conspiracy to import Class A drugs.
However, Hollister denied any involvement in the conspiracy, but on 2 December 2022, a jury at the Crown Court of Croydon found him guilty. On April 17, 2023, the same court sentenced him to eleven years in prison. Davis was sentenced to nine years and four months in prison and Spedding to four years.
NCA chapter operations manager Chris Duplock said: “Our investigation found that Davis, Spedding and Hollister worked together for a year to import cocaine into the UK.
“They used contacts in South America to obtain drugs, which were then given to criminal gangs in the UK for further distribution. Undoubtedly, they were able to make a significant profit.
“Working with law enforcement partners, we aim to crack down on those involved in this type of criminal activity and stop drug dealers before their products hit the streets of the UK.”
Author: Matt Davey