1. ITV Report

Couple who smuggled cocaine worth £240,000 through customs jailed

Kimberly Brown (left) and Garvey Barnes (right) smuggled cocaine into the UK from France. Credit: BPM Media

A drug dealer, who got his girlfriend to smuggle hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of cocaine into the UK using her suitcase, has been jailed.

Kimberly Brown, from Dudley, was stopped by border force officers as she attempted to bring in up to £240,000 worth of drugs from France.

She travelled separately across the English Channel to boyfriend, Garvey Barnes, from Nottingham. The pair met in Calais where they spent the night.

Barnes drove back in his car after they returned to the UK, leaving Brown to carry the drugs on a later ferry.

The couple attempted to bring £240,000 worth of cocaine back from France. Credit: BPM Media

Investigators from the National Crime Agency discovered phone calls and texts between the couple, linking Brown to the drugs run.

Texts also revealed how Barnes had been in Dover to meet Brown as she arrived with the drugs.

Barnes, was waiting on the other side for his girlfriend, but as Brown was arrested as she left the ferry.

Officers then found two kilos of cocaine in a secret compartment at the bottom of her suitcase.

Barnes denied any knowledge of the drugs run, but was charged in connection with the importation attempt.

The drugs were hidden in Kimberly Brown's suitcase. Credit: BPM Media

A jury found the pair guilty of being concerned in the importation of class A drugs. Barnes was jailed for ten-and-a-half years, while Brown was sentenced to four-and-a-half-years in prison.

Richard Bowen, from the NCA's investigation team, said Barnes' lengthy jail term reflected the nature of his role.

No doubt Garvey Barnes stood to make significant financial gain from this drugs run, but it seems he was happy to let his partner take all the risks.

– Richard Bowen, Border Investigations Team, National Crime Agency