By James Bryce
A BRITISH man who plotted to smuggle €170 million of cocaine into the UK has been jailed for 28 years.
John Alan Brooks, 61, from Marbella, was found guilty of conspiracy to import cocaine after his boat – Dances with Waves – was intercepted 170 miles off the Irish coast while en route to Liverpool from the Caribbean, in 2008 .
The operation, headed by the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA), led to the arrest of three crew members who each received 10-year prison sentences in 2009 after pleading guilty to possession of the 1.5 tonne haul.
Brooks, originally from Blackpool, was arrested last year having previously been convicted for a string of drug offences and travelling under false passports.
“Brooks was the go-to man for organised crime groups as he was an expert in arranging the transportation of huge quantities of drugs,” said SOCA Regional Head of Investigations Matt Horne.
“His criminal career stretches back nearly 30 years, during which time he has travelled extensively using false identities and has been imprisoned on a number of occasions.
“He’s back in prison where he belongs and we’re going after his money.”
He added: “Not only have we kept a huge amount of cocaine out of the UK, we can be confident that a number of crime groups have also been denied profits which would otherwise have been reinvested in further criminal activity.”