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7 August 2012, 16:30 | Updated: 7 August 2012, 17:33
Two men have been jailed for a total of 45 years after Suffolk's largest ever drugs haul.
Frederick Colverson, an unemployed 56-year-old man from Galsworthy Avenue, London who was found guilty of conspiracy to supply Class A controlled drugs by a jury at Ipswich Crown Court on 27th July has been sentenced to 25 years.
Terance Smith, a 57-year-old Company Director from Ethelreda Drive, Thetford who pleaded guilty to the same charge at an earlier hearing has been sentenced to 20 years.
The sentencing follows the discovery of 174kilos of high purity cocaine with a street value of £34,000,000 at business premises in Highbury Road, Brandon last year.
The cocaine had been concealed within a consignment of pineapples.
Officers had been gathering information for several months relating to the importation of cocaine through Felixstowe Docks.
The intelligence lead operation culminated on 31 October 2011 when officers attended premises in Highbury Road, Brandon where a container had been taken to an industrial unit.
Colverson and Smith were arrested following the discovery of the drugs. Both men were charged on the 3 November 20111 with conspiring to supply a Class A drug.
Following sentencing today at Ipswich Crown Court Detective Inspector Benny Benford said: “The sentencing at court today emphasises the seriousness of Smith and Colverson’s crime and sends out a strong message to those who maybe following the same criminal path.
“The sentencing follows on from a detailed and lengthy operation involving officers from the Serious and Organised Crime Directorate, Intelligence Directorate and partner agencies including the UK Border Agency and Forensic Services.
“Suffolk Constabulary is committed to tackling and dismantling organised crime groups. The discovery of £34m worth of cocaine will have a significant impact and disruption on drug activity and criminality taking place within Suffolk and wider areas of the country.”