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Lyme Regis pensioner admits to cannabis smuggling attempt
A LYME Regis pensioner has admitted trying to smuggle £168,000 worth of cannabis through Portsmouth ferry port.
Robert Ian Coulson, 71, pleaded guilty to being knowingly concerned in the fraudulent evasion of duty on prohibited goods when he appeared at Portsmouth Magistrates Court.
Coulson, of Anning Road, Lyme Regis, was stopped by officials at the port on November 3 with 29 kilos of the Class B drug when he was returning from Morocco.
The court was told that cannabis powder was hidden in four inner tubes in the spare wheel compartment of his car.
He was stopped at 6.30am after arriving on the ferry from Caen and his vehicle was searched.
The UK Border Agency initially reported that the drugs were worth approximately £64,000, although further investigation has valued the haul at £168,000.
A spokesman said: “The £64,000 figure was an estimate when it was believed the drugs seized were cannabis resin.
“However, the consignment was later established to be cannabis powder, which is more concentrated and consequently of higher value.”
Coulson was released on bail to be sentenced at Portsmouth Crown Court in late January.
The UK Border Agency confirmed that Coulson had pleaded guilty to the charge and would be sentenced at a later date.