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Drug mule ‘lucky to be alive’

A drug mule who “almost lost his life” after ingesting more than half a pound of cocaine has been fined $800 after pleading guilty to possession of a controlled drug.

British national Colmin Smith, 48, lost consciousness aboard a flight from Antigua to London shortly after telling airline staff he had swallowed a large amount of cocaine and believed one of the pellets had opened inside his stomach, forcing the plane to make an emergency landing in Bermuda.

After being taken to the King Edward VII Memorial Hospital, Government analysts determined Smith had ingested a total of 61 pellets containing 239.39 grams of cocaine. The drug was found to have a purity of 73 percent and carries a street value of $68,250, prosecutor Takiyah Burgess told Magistrates' Court this morning.

Senior Magistrate Archibald Warner told Smith he was “lucky” to both be alive and to only be charged with possession of a controlled drug, which carries a maximum penalty of $1,000.

An emotional Smith said he thought death was “inevitable”, thanking God and the “quick thinking” of Virgin Airlines staff for being alive.

“After I informed the flight attendant, in my mind, I died,” said Smith, who resides in Birmingham, England. “I felt the death coming.”

Mr Warner told Smith: “I guess you are lucky, but there are other technical reasons for why you've been charged with this but let's put it down to luck. You should thank whoever you worship or look to, because you are really lucky.”

Mr Warner said Smith could also count his blessings for landing in Bermuda.

“You didn't go to the first heaven but you came to the second heaven.”

Mr Smith agreed, adding: “I've met a lot of nice people here.”

Mr Warner fined Smith $800, or 80 days imprisonment in lieu of payment.

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Published July 01, 2014 at 1:49 pm (Updated July 01, 2014 at 1:50 pm)

Drug mule ‘lucky to be alive’

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