ANOTHER man has been jailed for his part in a plot to smuggle millions of pounds worth of cocaine into the UK using an Isle of Wight fishing boat.
Last June, five men — including Islanders Jamie Green, Daniel Payne and Jonathan Beere — were sentenced to a total of 104 years for attempting to smuggle 255kg in to the UK.
They were convicted of a conspiracy that involved using Green's fishing boat to collect drugs thrown overboard from an international container ship. The drugs, worth an estimated £50m were tied to ropes left in the water to look like a string of lobster pots, police said.
Now a sixth man, who went on the run, has been caught by police and jailed for 28 years for his involvement.
Edward Henry Austin, 47, originally of Welling, Kent, was said by police to have orchestrated the plot, which was one of the biggest drugs smuggling operations in the Isle of Wight's history.
Austin fled after the plan was foiled by an operation involving the Serious and Organised Crime Agency, the Metropolitan Police, Hampshire and Isle of Wight Police, HM Coastguard and UK Border Agency.
A Serious and Organised Crime Agency spokesman said Austin was caught living in Spain and brought back to the UK in January.