September 26, 2019

Jesus Christ! I thought wed get four: Pensioner cruise drug smugglers sentenced to eight years in Portuguese prison
A British pensioner whispered “Jesus Christ! I wasn’t expecting more than four” to his wife in court yesterday/THURS as they were jailed for eight years each for smuggling £1 million pounds of cocaine on a luxury Caribbean cruise.  Three judges convicted ex-chef Roger Clarke, 72, and his former secretary wife Sue, 71, of drugs trafficking after a one-day trial at Lisbon’s main criminal court. They were told they will serve their sentences in Portugal instead of being sent back to Britain as a state prosecutor had requested. Lead judge Margarida Alves told the couple: “We are totally convinced you knew the contents of these four cases. You did what you did not because you are drug consumers but because you wanted to make an easy profit.” Mr Clarke held hands with his wife as they learnt their fate through a translator before blurting out in shock at the length of his sentence. As he left court in handcuffs with a police escort he told a reporter: “Someone should come to see me. I would like to tell the real story.” The elderly couple were arrested on board cruise liner Marco Polo when it docked in Lisbon on December 4 2018 after Portuguese police acting on a tip-off from Britain’s National Crime Agency discovered nine kilos of cocaine hidden inside the lining of four suitcases Roger had been handed on the sunshine island of St Lucia.  They protested their innocence last Tuesday as they went on trial after nine months in separate remand prisons in the Portuguese capital. The former Bromley, Kent-born chef told the court he had no idea the cases had drugs inside and was taking them back to the UK for a friend called Lee who had promised to pay him £800 and bragged he could sell them for a massive profit at Harrods. Roger and Sue Clarke arrive at the court in Lisbon Credit: RAFAEL MARCHANTE/ REUTERS He said UK-based Jamaican businessman ‘Lee’ and another associate called Dee, who he named in court as George Wilmot, had asked him to help negotiate the import of exotic fruit during Caribbean cruise stopovers and he brought the suitcases back for them as a sideline. State prosecutor Manuela Brito rubbished his court claim he had been “betrayed” by people he trusted and insisted the Brits were drug mules who used the four cruises they took to South America in two years as a front for their crimes. And she questioned how they could pay for the cruises costing around £18,000 when they survived on a joint monthly pension of £1150 they had to pay £445 in rent from. Mr Clarke, who said after his arrest Lee paid for the last trip but at trial claimed they had paid through ”savings from hard work,” gave a cabin steward one of the old suitcases the couple boarded the Marco Polo with at the start of their cruise in Tilbury, Essex, and gifted the other two to the unidentified man he claimed handed him the new holdalls Mrs Clarke admitted during their trial she had been with her husband when they took two of the four cases containing the drugs onto their cruise ship, but insisted she only knew her husband’s business associates socially and never accompanied him when he negotiated fruit sales. Mr Clarke confirmed in court they had both served prison sentences in Norway after being convicted in 2010 for trafficking 240 kilos of cannabis resin, claiming he had done a first drugs run to clear debts and was made to do more with his wife as cover after being threatened with violence by gangster paymasters if he stopped.  Police pictures show the suit cases being taken apart to show the hidden Cocaine Credit: JA/SF Roger, who was born Roger Button but changed his surname to Clarke after finishing his prison sentence, was jailed for nearly five year and Sue for three years nine months.  The expat couple lied to friends in Guardamar del Segura near Alicante where they lived and were the life and soul of local bars and members of a golf club, by telling they had served time in prison for cigarette smuggling. They were warned ahead of last Tuesday’s trial they faced up to 12 years in jail. The crime they were convicted of carries a prison sentence of four to 12 years in Portugal.  The lead judge told the court as she announced the verdict and sentence today/yesterday (THURS) Mr Clarke’s claims about helping his mystery business associates with their fruit and suitcase business “didn’t deserve any credibility.” She added: “Any person involved in importing fruit would do their business directly instead of going through friends on cruise ships. “It’s not credible either that they would carry four cases for someone and throw away their existing cases with the justification they they’ve got no room in their cabin.” Insisting their age and life experience should have made them suspicious about the idea of bringing holdalls back to Europe for someone else, especially as convicted drugs smugglers, she added: “This court is convinced the accused did what they did consciously and of their own free will and knew what they were carrying.” Roger, dressed in a blue jumper, blue shirt and black trousers, shook his head in disbelief as he realised he was not departing court a free man, leaving one hand on his wife’s lap as he raised the other to his forehead. His wife, wearing a white shirt with blue stripes and black trousers, clasped his hand tightly but made no comment. They were led away from Lisbon’s Campus de Justica with a police escort and driven away to the same prisons where they have spent the last nine months - Roger to EP Lisboa which another Brit who was in jail with him has describe as the “worst” prison in Europe and Sue to nearby Tires Women’s Prison. Their defence lawyer Susana Paisana said she was planning to appeal. Roger and Sue Clarke at court for the final day of their trial Credit: Solarpix.com Portuguese police insisted during their trial the couple had not cooperated by giving them the information they needed to identify the criminals paying them to do drugs runs.  It is not known if British police or other crimefighting agencies have managed to identify the men Mr Clarke pointed the finger at. Although the street value of the nine kilos of cocaine the couple were caught with was initially put at £2 million, experts later valued it at around half that. Portuguese prosecutors say they believe the Clarkes were making between £18,000 and £26,500 plus exes per cruise they took so they could smuggle drugs into Europe. Britain’s NCA said they believed the couple were planning to offload the cocaine in Portugal but Policia Judiciaria inspector Carla Nunes told their trial she thought the final destination was the UK. The police chief accused the Clarkes in a damning pre-trial report of being drug mules who used their world cruises as a cover for their criminal activities. Mr Clarke fought back tears as he told the court before the judges retired to consider their verdict last week: ““We have lost everything now since we have been in custody. “They have stopped our pensions, my family has sold our car to raise money for our lawyers, we have lost all our possessions. We have nothing.”
Related Stories
Latest News
Top news around the world
Coronavirus Disease

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious disease caused by a newly discovered coronavirus.

Most people infected with the COVID-19 virus will experience mild to moderate respiratory illness and recover without requiring special treatment. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more likely to develop serious illness.

Around the World

Celebrity News

> Latest News in Media

Watch It
Chuck D Says Youth Should Run Politics from Top to Bottom | TMZ
July 02, 2020
d3jcvybSZGc
L.A. City Council Prez Herb Wesson's LAPD Reform Plan | TMZ
July 01, 2020
NEzre88T28E
D.L. Hughley Says He Spread COVID-19 to His Radio Show Team | TMZ
July 01, 2020
5Vwh5tJJ-as
Will the 'Ellen DeGeneres Show' be canceled? | Page Six Celebrity News
July 01, 2020
w6fF_hmLmw4
Candace Cameron Bure wants these ‘Full House’ quotes to live on | Page Six Celebrity News
July 02, 2020
PRF4fuEHuSM
Ex-hubby of ‘RHONJ’s’ Dina Manzo hired mobster to attack her now-husband | Page Six Celebrity News
July 01, 2020
BsAvLQrg30o
Henry Cavill on His 'Witcher' Workout Regiment, Why He's Excited for the 'Justice League' Snyder Cut
July 02, 2020
JldJ9cDzZ1o
Claire Danes & Damian Lewis - Actors on Actors - Full Conversation
July 02, 2020
HN2RlGCzJNY
'Stateless' Cast Talks Immigration, Protests, Working with Cate Blanchett
July 01, 2020
zJ0MfUCQNQ4
Jada's Affair?, Charlize Ther-Wrong Name & Housewives Hitman
July 02, 2020
ZcwG2INSVRI
Chance's Relationship Fail, $1K Haircut & Jen's Advice
July 03, 2020
mPSzAABN4yI
Twitch Streamer Byron "Reckful" Bernstein Dead at 31
July 02, 2020
RCbdlgdydME
TV Schedule
Late Night Show
Watch the latest shows of U.S. top comedians

Sports

Latest sport results, news, videos, interviews and comments
Latest Events
02
Jul
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester City - Liverpool
02
Jul
ENGLAND: Premier League
Sheffield United - Tottenham Hotspur
02
Jul
ITALY: Serie A
Roma - Udinese
02
Jul
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Madrid - Getafe
02
Jul
ITALY: Serie A
Atalanta - Napoli
02
Jul
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Sociedad - Espanyol
02
Jul
SPAIN: La Liga
Eibar - Osasuna
01
Jul
ITALY: Serie A
Spal - AC Milan
01
Jul
ENGLAND: Premier League
West Ham United - Chelsea
01
Jul
ENGLAND: Premier League
Arsenal - Norwich City
01
Jul
ITALY: Serie A
Inter Milan - Brescia
01
Jul
ITALY: Serie A
Lecce - Sampdoria
01
Jul
ITALY: Serie A
Verona - Parma
01
Jul
ITALY: Serie A
Fiorentina - Sassuolo
01
Jul
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Betis - Villarreal
01
Jul
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Valladolid - Levante
30
Jun
SPAIN: La Liga
Barcelona - Atletico Madrid
30
Jun
ENGLAND: Premier League
Brighton - Manchester United
30
Jun
ITALY: Serie A
Genoa - Juventus
28
Jun
ITALY: Serie A
AC Milan - Roma
28
Jun
ITALY: Serie A
Parma - Inter Milan
28
Jun
SPAIN: La Liga
Espanyol - Real Madrid
28
Jun
ITALY: Serie A
Napoli - Spal
27
Jun
SPAIN: La Liga
Atletico Madrid - Alaves
27
Jun
SPAIN: La Liga
Celta Vigo - Barcelona
26
Jun
ITALY: Serie A
Juventus - Lecce
25
Jun
ENGLAND: Premier League
Chelsea - Manchester City
25
Jun
ENGLAND: Premier League
Southampton - Arsenal
24
Jun
ENGLAND: Premier League
Manchester United - Sheffield United
24
Jun
ENGLAND: Premier League
Liverpool - Crystal Palace
24
Jun
SPAIN: La Liga
Real Madrid - Mallorca
24
Jun
ITALY: Serie A
Roma - Sampdoria
24
Jun
ITALY: Serie A
Inter Milan - Sassuolo
Find us on Instagram
at @feedimo to stay up to date with the latest.
Featured Video You Might Like
0vmRhiLHE2U JFCZUoa6MYE UfN5PCF5EUo 2PV55f3-UAg W3y9zuI_F64 -7qCxIccihU pQ9gcOoH9R8 g5MRDEXRk4k tudKp5Vhs3k iwWHibhssSo kQr0XHPbICM 5NeCb7JxaRk
Copyright © 2020 Feedimo. All Rights Reserved.