Search

Havering men jailed for part in plot to import cocaine in containers of exotic fruit

13:33 02 September 2014

David Roberts, 61, of Romford (left) and Roy Godber, 64, of Wennington Road, Rainham (right).

David Roberts, 61, of Romford (left) and Roy Godber, 64, of Wennington Road, Rainham (right).

Police

Two Havering men, who were members of a team that tried to bring 26 kilos of cocaine into the UK concealed in a containers of exotic fruit, are serving 20-year prison sentences.

Roy Godber, 64, of Wennington Road, Rainham, and David Roberts, 61, of Romford, absconded during their trial in September 2011 and were convicted in absence to spend 20-years in prison. After a year-long hunt investigators tracked the pair to Malta and they were extradited in 2013 after serving a sentence for possession of false passports.

Reporting restrictions on a four-year investigation that saw members of two organised crime groups, including Godber and Roberts, jailed for more than 148 years have been lifted after the final member was jailed.

The two groups had tried to use corrupt shipping company manager Shaun Wilson, 46, of Madeira Road, Portsmouth, to import cocaine through Portsmouth Docks.

The National Crime Agency observed the two groups as they met separately with Wilson to plan the imports.

Each shipment was timed to coincide with Wilson’s shifts so he could remove the drugs from the docks without detection.

Neither group achieved their aim. The first, of which Godber and Roberts were members with an organisational role, was foiled after a container containing pineapples shipped from Costa Rica was seized in November 2010 and found to contain 26 kilos of the class A drug, cocaine, with an estimated street value of up to £3million.

The capture of Wilson during the operation prevented the second group from succeeding with their plan to import cocaine hidden in a container of bananas.

Wilson was found guilty of one charge of conspiracy of import cocaine in September 2011 and jailed for 14 years. He pleaded guilty to the second conspiracy in March 2013 and received a concurrent eight-year sentence.

The remaining seven men were from London, Kent and Portsmouth.

Gerry McGowan, National Crime Agency operations manager, said: “The long term plan was to import vast quantities of cocaine on a regular basis.

“Protecting our boundaries is a priority for the NCA. We will be relentless in pursuing criminals who try to bring drugs into the country, however long it takes and wherever they try to hide.”

Two further men from Rainham were arrested as part of the wider investigation after a car with £300,000 concealed in a purpose built compartment underneath the boot was seized. The men were later convicted of money laundering offences.

Related links

Drugs and cash seized during police raid on home in Straight Road, Harold Hill

Romford man charged with possession of drugs, ‘dangerous driving’, and possession of blades

Latest Romford News Stories

Raja Rashid Ali, from Elm Park, was murdered on Sunday in Elm Park.

Police have released a picture of the man stabbed to death by an armed gang.

07:01
Kerri Warne community roadwatch volunteer with the speed gun

Speeding drivers could soon be caught out by their neighbours, family or friends laying in wait with hand-held speed guns.

Yesterday, 17:15
Regular members of the Loose Lads panel. Picture Essex TV.

A new panel show which promises to give women an insight into the male mind has been filmed in Romford.

Yesterday, 15:28
An artist impression of The Retailery, a co-working space which is due to open in November in Market Place, Romford

A co-working space is looking to give small retail businesses a boost by providing them with a space to display their goods.

Havering Police is investigating after a video shows a boy being beaten up by a group of boys

Two teenagers have been arrested after a 15-year-old boy was assaulted in a park in July.

Yesterday, 12:40
Raja Rashid Ali died in Braintree Road on the Heath Park Estate

Four men were arrested today on suspicion of the murder of a man from Elm Park.

Yesterday, 10:54
A child-only hair salon opened in Romford on Saturday.

A hairdressers, claiming to be the first ever children’s–only hair salon in Romford has opened.

Yesterday, 10:21
Amanda Armitage, and her children Daniel and Emily at the top of Snowdon in Wales.

A family climbed a peak and raised more than £1,000 for a charity, which promotes cardiac screening for young people.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

News from your area

WW100

Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.

Competitions

Kit yourself out and go Apple mad!

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

VW Golf Estate

As we grow older it becomes more and more important to have means to travel about safely and quickly. Our friendship groups and families grow and the need to have a car that is not only safe but also fast and big enough for all our needs is ever more important. There are many cars on the market for such needs but none deals with them as efficiently or as neatly as a VW Golf Estate. These cars are build strong, long lasting and spacious for a reason. They cater to the needs of many and are some of the most popular cars currently on the market.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now