Pair are jailed for cannabis plot in Wembley that would give every person in Britain two joints

John Wrgiht, left, and Steve McDonald

John Wrgiht, left, and Steve McDonald - Credit: Archant

Two men have been jailed for their role in one of the country’s biggest ever cannabis smuggling plots which would have provided every person in Britain with two joints.

Cannabis seized by officers from NCA

Cannabis seized by officers from NCA - Credit: Archant

Steven McDonald, 32, and John Wright, 66, were busted after officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA) raided a row of garages they had rented off Elmstead Avenue, Wembley, to stash the drugs.

Their arrest was the culmination of an investigation into the gang behind the importation of 28 tonnes of cannabis over a seven year period.

The drugs were disguised as tiles

The drugs were disguised as tiles - Credit: Archant

They were caught after Border Force officers at Harwich port intercepted a consignment of around 300 kilos of herbal cannabis that had been shipped from the Netherlands disguised as flooring tiles in April last year.

It was signed for by McDonald, from Kent, who then loaded it into a van and drove it to the garages with Wright, from Hounslow, following behind.

The hunt is on to find 'Mark Gamble'

The hunt is on to find 'Mark Gamble' - Credit: Archant


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During a search officers uncovered another 150 kilos of cannabis in another garage in the same row.

The pair admitted conspiring to import class B drugs at an earlier hearing at Luton Crown Court last October and Wright was sentenced to nine years and four months and McDonald eight years on Friday.

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Both will also be banned from travelling outside the UK for ten years after their release.

Officers from NCA and the Met are hunting for a third man who rented the garages used to unload the cannabis in Wembley and another location in West Hampstead which was used as a delivery address.

They have released photograph of the man who used the name ‘Mark Gamble’.

DI Steve Miles said: “We know this identity has been used to rent a number of properties in the north London area, and I would urge anyone with information about him, his whereabouts or his true identity to contact the NCA on 0370 4967622.”

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