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Peru drug smuggler to be sent to N Ireland prison

A convicted drug smuggler jailed in Peru is set to be transferred to Northern Ireland where she will serve the rest of her sentence.

Michaella McCollum Connolly (left) and Melissa Reid. Credit: Police handout

Michaella McCollum, from Dungannon, County Tyrone, and her friend Melissa Reid, from Glasgow, were jailed last year for six years and eight months.

The pair both admitted to trying to smuggle cocaine worth £1.5 million from the South American country to Spain.

Reid could serve rest of Peru drug sentence in UK

Melissa Reid claimed she was forced to board a flight with 24lb of cocaine hidden in her luggage. Credit: Reuters/Mariana Bazo

Melissa Reid, one of two women convicted of drug smuggling in Peru last year, could serve the rest of her sentence in the UK after Lima authorities requested a transfer.

The Scottish Prison Service confirmed it has received a repatriation application that could see the 20-year-old return home in the coming months.

Reid and Michaella McCollum, from Ireland, were both jailed for six years and eight months in September after pleading guilty to boarding a flight at Lima airport with a £1.5 million haul of cocaine.


Uncontacted Amazon tribe reacts to planes overhead

A series of pictures of a remote, uncontacted tribe in the Amazon basin has been released. The pictures were taken near the Xinane river in Brazil's Acre State, close to its border with Peru.

The tribe was first identified as "uncontacted" in 2011 when satellite pictures revealed this community was living near the border with Peru.

Indians who are considered uncontacted by anthropologists react to a plane flying over their community in the Amazon basin Credit: Reuters

In the latest pictures, taken on March 25, the uncontacted people are seen reacting to a plane flying overhead. As many as five tribal men can be seen raising their weapons in a threatening manner at the plane.

The tribe is based near Xinane river in Brazil's Acre State, near the border with Peru, Credit: Reuters


Family of Peru drug smuggler insist she is innocent

The family of Michaella McCollum, who was jailed for over six years for attempting to smuggle cocaine out of Peru, have said they still believe she is innocent.

Michaella's sister Samantha said she was "devastated" over the ordeal and wished she could "look after and protect" her sister.

The family also revealed said they would not celebrating Christmas this year following the ordeal.

To hear more of the interview, visit ITV Daybreak

Peru drug smugglers first claimed they were coerced

Michaela McCollum and Melissa Reid who had been working in Ibiza this summer, had previously claimed they were coerced into carrying the drugs by Colombian drug lords who kidnapped them at gunpoint.

Michaella McCollum, left, and Melissa Reid in court in August. Credit: Reuters

They said theywere forced to board a flight from Lima to Spain with 24lb of cocaine in food packets hidden inside their luggage when they were arrested.

So far they have been held at the notorious Virgen de Fatima prison in Lima.

Their guilty pleas at the end of September came on the same day that the UN declared that Peru has now overtaken Colombia as the world's number one coca leaf producer, the raw material of cocaine.

According to a report by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, coca plantations in Peru covered 60,400 hectares last year.

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