[A] man and a woman who were found in possession of vast quantities of substances commonly used in the production of Class A drugs have today (23 May 2017) been jailed at Carlisle Crown Court.
Alex Hardie, 53, of Bents Road, Baillieston, Glasgow was jailed for six years and eight months. Amanda Thomson, 37, of Shettleston Road, Glasgow, received a four-year jail sentence.
The court heard how Cumbria Constabulary officers stopped a BMW in Carlisle being driven by Hardie, with Thomson as a passenger.
Hardie claimed the pair had been to Blackpool but his behaviour caused officers to become suspicious and they searched the car. The officers found approximately 50kg of Benzocaine – a drug commonly used as a cocaine bulking agent by drug suppliers. They also found a further 50kg of a substance which was a mixture of caffeine and paracetamol – substances commonly used as heroin bulking agents.
The substances were found inside a number of barrels and bags being transported in the car.
When asked what was in the barrel, Hardie replied: “It’s something to do with drugs.”
The amounts of Benzocaine, caffeine and paracetamol could have been used in the production and had the potential to produce 50kg of cocaine and 50kg of heroin. Each kilo of heroin has the potential value of £50,000 to £100,000 and the cocaine at least £40,000 per kilo.
In his police interview, Hardie refused to give any comment to the questions asked of him.
Thomson supplied a statement in which she denied any knowledge of the substances being in the car or any involvement in drug supply but refused to answer any questions.
Both Hardie and Thomson denied a charge of being concerned in the supply of heroin and cocaine but pleaded guilty at court.
Detective Constable David Hetherington said: “This was a vast quantity of substances which we know are used as bulking agents for cocaine and heroin in order that the dealers can increase their profits.
“Hardie and Thomson were caught and these items taken away due to good police work. The officers who stopped the BMW acted on their suspicions swiftly and their efforts has led to Hardie and Thomson being jailed.”