Jail for UK Man Who Smuggled Cocaine to Pay Off Poker Debt

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09:05
03 Nov

Smuggling cocaine to repay a $60k poker debt resulted in a seven-and-a-half-year jail sentence for an Englishman final week after Jersey customs officers discovered his badly-hidden stash…

56-year-old Londoner, Andrew John Bennett, was arrested on April thirtieth this 12 months as he tried to enter Jersey with greater than 125g of cocaine.

When stopped by customs officers, Bennett claimed he was visiting the island to play at two native poker golf equipment, although admitted he didn’t know the place certainly one of them was.

A search of his belongings revealed a financial institution card in one other particular person’s title, after which a blue plastic service bag was present in a zipped compartment.

Contained in the bag was a clingfilm bundle containing white powder, which was examined and decided to be 60% pure cocaine, with a wholesale worth of between £9,000 and £11,000 and a road worth of £18,000-£25,000 ($25,000-$35,000).

Bennett claimed that he was delivering the medication to repay a poker debt, relating a story that concerned shedding £60,000 in a drunken poker session to males he later found had been “very harmful”.

Bennett’s protection advocate, Julia-Ann Dix, described Bennett as “not a classy drug mule” and that the “determined measures” he resorted to had been as a results of threats.

Bennett was allegedly instructed to “do one thing to pay his debt,” or “one thing would occur to his household.”

Describing Bennett’s behaviour as a “silly choice to undertake crime to pay again money owed,” Dix provided Bennett’s diary as proof, the black e-book entry one week previous to his arrest studying: “Completely f***ed. Worst ever.”

Related to this, the defence claimed, was Bennett’s refusal to provide passwords for an iPad and iPhone seized throughout his arrest.

That led to the court docket revealing that it was solely the second case the island, the most important of the Channel islands, had seen of somebody “failing to reveal keys”. It additionally added an extra 15 months tacked on to Bennett’s sentence.

The prosecution case was that Bennett had “imported a big amount of cocaine at comparatively excessive purity that was to be bought on the streets of Jersey.”

In addition they described him as “a trusted courier performing a worthwhile perform within the provide of medication within the Jersey neighborhood,” and rejected claims that Bennett was being pressured to smuggle the cocaine.

Jersey’s Royal Courtroom’s Superior Quantity, led by Commissioner Julian Clyde-Smith, described Bennett’s choice as “silly” and sentenced him to six years and three months imprisonment for the drug smuggling cost. The additional 15 months for failing to reveal his passwords is to be served consecutively.


We revealed again in July how highstakes Italian-Kuwaiti poker participant, Salman Behbehani, was arrested on suspicion of smuggling a combined bag of medication into the social gathering island of Ibiza.

Behbehani was amongst 30 passengers on a non-public jet that landed in Ibiza on Friday July sixteenth, together with his suitcase exhibiting indicators of “natural substances and small international containers” when scanned.

When opened, Spanish Guardia Civil officers found fairly a haul:

  • 315g cocaine
  • 705g cannabis
  • 80g crystal methamphetamine
  • LSD
  • Ecstasy
  • Magic Mushrooms
  • Velocity
  • Hashish

Behbehani, rumoured to be the notorious non-public sport drug provider referred to as “Tablet Ivey”, stays in custody.

Jail time can result in some shocking outcomes and tales, similar to that of Michael Haag, who served a 3-year sentence on medication fees and found poker whereas inside.

As we reported a number of years again, Michael and fellow inmates used Monopoly cash instead of chips and their winnings and losses had been paid in commissary items similar to ramen noodles and cigarettes.

Haag has since gone on to earn greater than $430,000 from the sport on the surface, together with a small money simply final week on the ongoing WSOP in Las Vegas.

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