Friday, 26 March 2021

Lorry driver is jailed for two years for trying to smuggle Bulgarian Antiquities into UK

Some of the artefacts (Kent Police)

Think before you buy those artefacts on eBay. A lorry was stopped at Dover on 27th October last year and coming into the country with a load of trousers, but strapped to the chassis was a package of artefacts Bulgaria that the media claim were collectively worth more than £76,000. They included ancient coins, pendants, brooches, statues and spearheads  (Katie Feehan, 'Lorry driver is jailed for two years for trying to smuggle ancient coins, arrowheads and statues into UK to sell for Bulgarian mafia bosses' Mail Online  22 March 2021).

 Dimitar Dimitrov, 41, was working as a courier on behalf of a Bulgarian organised crime group and has now been jailed for two years following an investigation by Kent Police detectives with assistance from the Metropolitan Police Service's specialist Art and Antiquities Unit and the Bulgarian authorities. Canterbury Crown Court heard how Dimitrov initially denied any knowledge of the items in his lorry, which were found during a search by Border Force officers. The items had been concealed within two black packages that were taped onto an airline in the vehicle's chassis rail, which Dimitrov claimed must have been placed there without his knowledge. Evidence including messages found on his mobile phone led officers to believe he had been planning to deliver the items to another member of the organised crime group, who would then try to sell them to antique collectors in London. Dimitrov, from Pazardzhik in Bulgaria, pleaded guilty to transferring criminal property prior to his sentencing last week. 

The investigating officer, Detective Constable Max Gregory of Kent Police expressed satisfaction that the smuggler was convicted and points out that the organised crime groups behind such activities use the proceeds to fund other international criminal activities. Enquiries are still on-going to identity other individuals within this criminal network.

No comments:

Creative Commons License
Ten utwór jest dostępny na licencji Creative Commons Uznanie autorstwa-Bez utworów zależnych 3.0 Unported.