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2 December 2015, 11:57
A woman has been jailed for seven years for attempting to smuggle cocaine worth around £1 million into the UK hidden in toiletries.
Myrtle McCreath, 53, from Ayr, was arrested at Glasgow Airport on February 26 2014 after arriving on a flight from Sao Paulo, Brazil, via Amsterdam.
During a search of her baggage, Border Force officers found around 50 containers of face cream, talcum powder and other toiletries. Inside, there was a total of 7.8 kilos of high-purity cocaine.
McCreath denied knowledge of the drugs, telling National Crime Agency investigators that she had been in Brazil for a week on holiday.
But messages found on her mobile phone showed she had been given a suitcase to carry back to the UK, and was due to take a train to Manchester where she would hand it over.
Officers also discovered that she had been paid 1,000 euro (£700) just days before travelling, and had been paid a similar sum for a return trip to Australia via China a few months earlier.
She was found guilty of importing class A drugs following a trial at the High Court in Glasgow in October.
She has now been sentenced to seven years in prison, according to the NCA.
John McGowan, from the NCA border investigation team at the Scottish Crime Campus in Gartcosh, said: "This was a substantial seizure of high-purity drugs with a potential street value of almost £1 million. Had it not been seized I've no doubt it would have ended up being sold on the streets of the UK.
"Using individuals like Myrtle McCreath is a common tactic for the organised crime networks involved in this illegal trade, which is why we are working with law enforcement partners such as Border Force to do all we can to disrupt and bring them to justice.''
Murdo MacMillan, head of Border Force Scotland, said: "This case should serve as a warning to anyone tempted to try to smuggle drugs. Our officers will catch you and you will face prison.
"In making this seizure, Border Force officers at Glasgow have taken a significant quantity of cocaine out of circulation and prevented it from reaching the streets.''