Sheffield man jailed over £250k plot to smuggle ketamine and ecstasy through post
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Two men who were caught trying to smuggle large quantities of ketamine and ecstasy into the UK through the post have been jailed for a total of 17 years.
On Sunday, April 11, 2021, a parcel from the Netherlands that was destined for an address in Sheffield was intercepted at East Midlands Airport by a UK Border Force officer. On examination, the package contained suspected Class A and B drugs.
Forensic examination revealed the powder and tablets to be 3kg of ketamine and 15,000 ecstasy tablets, with a combined street value of up to £250,000.
The investigation led police to Sheffield man Keiron Hinds and his friend Femi Solesi, from Northampton.
The court heard Hinds and Solesi had exchanged a number of messages via WhatsApp, while planning to import the drugs into the UK. Following the seizure of the package at the airport, Solesi then travelled to Sheffield to try and locate both Hinds and the drugs.
The pair were arrested and interviewed. Hinds claimed he had no knowledge of what was in the package and was taking delivery as a favour to a friend. Solesi declined to comment.
Hinds, aged 29, of Wingfield Crescent, Birley, Sheffield, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to evade duty on the prohibition of the importation of controlled drugs in October 2022.
Solesi, 29 of Dallington Haven, Northampton, was found guilty of three counts of evasion of duty on the prohibition of the importation of controlled drugs on 30 June, following a trial at Sheffield Crown Court.
Yesterday (Wednesday, October 11) both men were jailed - Solesi for 11 years and Hinds for six years.
Detective Inspector Iain Martin, of South Yorkshire Police's Serious and Organised Crime Unit, said: "Hinds and Solesi made a brazen attempt to import drugs into the UK through the postal system, and are now rightly starting lengthy custodial sentences.
"We know the devastating impact that drugs like this have on our communities. Drug supply is all too often associated with violent crime, which causes further harm, and I’m pleased that a significant amount of Class A and Class B drugs destined for the streets of South Yorkshire has been removed.
"Our work to identify, target and disrupt those individuals who would seek to supply illegal substances will continue, and I would urge anyone with any suspicions or information that could help us, to please contact us."