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 News Stories

Police and ambulance attended the scene on Saturday morning

The driver escaped with no injuries after his car overturned on Wingletye Lane, Hornchurch on Saturday morning.

Image of woman police wish to speak with

Detectives have released images of a woman they would like to speak to following a distraction burglary.

London will not quite escape Storm Imogen (Picture: PA Images)

Londoners are being warned to expect gale force winds of up to 70 miles per hour and heavy rain on Monday as Storm Imogen sweeps over Britain.

Who will you vote for? (Credit: PA/Jon Giddens)

Three charities in the borough will receive up to £12,000, and readers of the Recorder can help decide who should get the proceeds.

07:00
We Are FSTVL has applied for licensing permission for its 2016 edition

Organisers of We Are FSTVL have applied for licensing permission and said there would be ‘no repeat’ of last year’s transport chaos.

10:47
The lucky pupils at the airport for their first flight

Lucky pupils have taken to the skies for the first time in their lives as part of their school’s global vision.

Yesterday, 15:00
Chairman Alan Tomlin celebrates with members of Havering's University of the Third Age

With more than 30 different groups to join, there is an activity for everyone.

Yesterday, 12:00
(from left to right) Hannah Veal, 13, Alicia Gonzalez, 15, Scott Richardson, Jay Douglas, Cirsty Young, 16 and Alyssa Frank, 12 at Drapers' Academy where pupils and teachers took part in a lip sync battle in their school hall.

Who do you think would win in a sing-off between Ed Sheeran, the Spice Girls, Celine Dion and Justin Bieber?

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

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Surface Pro 4

Technology is ever evolving. We are constantly being shown new technology that is innovative, revolutionary and designed to make life easier for us all. Gone are the days of dial up modems and computers so large you needed half a room to store it. We are in the age of smooth, small and sleek. Companies are all trying their best to create technology that is easy to transport and guaranteed to be user friendly.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe