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Dutch man swallowed 199 cannabis pellets in £30k Jersey smuggling bid

Dutch man swallowed 199 cannabis pellets in £30k Jersey smuggling bid

Sunday 14 April 2024

Dutch man swallowed 199 cannabis pellets in £30k Jersey smuggling bid

Sunday 14 April 2024

A Dutch national who told officers he had swallowed some “hash” after being stopped at Jersey Airport – and then proceeded to produce 199 pellets of cannabis worth £30,000 over four days while under arrest – has been jailed.

Evert Paul Smallegange (58) claimed he only took on the smuggling job because he had amassed debts of around €10,000 while ill and unable to work and pay bills for several months.

He had never been to Jersey before, but was going to be paid €750 by two individuals who lived in Spain – where he had been living for five years – to bring the cannabis into the island.

The plan was for Smallegange to make these deliveries of cannabis on a regular basis.


Pictured: Smallegange was sentenced to 10 months imprisonment in the Royal Court on Friday.

However, having flown from Malaga to Gatwick and onwards to Jersey where he was due to be met by another man on 5 February 2024, he was arrested by a Customs Officer and his handbag and suitcase were seized.

Smallegange was taken to the Elizabeth Terminal Customs Custody suite for questioning, and admitted having swallowed cannabis. He was then taken to hospital so he could be monitored while passing the internal packages over four days.

Analysis found each of the professionally wrapped pellets to contain an average of 5.08g of cannabis resin – making the total just under a kilo, with an estimated street value of between £20,000 and £30,000.

A search of his handbag uncovered €145 in cash (made up of 2 x €50, 2 x €20 and 1 x €5).

In the Royal Court on Friday, Crown Advocate Lauren Taylor, prosecuting, explained that Smallegange had a number of previous convictions – included four for drugs offences in his native Netherlands.

He was therefore deemed as being at high risk of reconviction, so she suggested a sentence of 12 months in jail.

She also argued Smallegange should be recommended for deportation, saying: "The defendant's continued presence is detrimental to the island."

Advocate Lauren Glynn, defending, emphasised that Smallegange's life had become "somewhat chaotic" since he had become unable to work, and that he was in "dire financial circumstances" at the time.

Arguing for a jail term of six to eight months, she added that he was "co-operative and candid with the police and offered a guilty plea at the first moment".


Pictured: Over a period of four days, Smallegange produced 199 pellets – each of which contained approximately five grams of cannabis resin. 

Handing down the sentence of 10 months imprisonment, Bailiff Sir Tim Le Cocq said the Jurats were giving him credit for his guilty plea.

"We take your remorse to be entirely genuine in these circumstances," he said, but added: "You do not have the benefit of mitigation for good character."

The Jurats sitting were Elizabeth Dulake and Gareth Hughes.

Following the sentencing, Paul Le Monnier, Senior Manager at Jersey Customs and Immigration Service, commented: "Individuals will use all sorts of methods to import drugs to the island.

"Whilst swallowing drugs may not be a common method to import to Jersey, officers are always alert to that possibility and will progress those investigations as necessary.

"The danger to individuals concealing drugs internally, particularly by swallowing them, cannot be underestimated."

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