National Post

AMBULANCE SCHEME NETS JAIL FOR SMUGGLER

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A Dutch man who set up a fake ambulance company to smuggle huge amounts of heroin and cocaine into Britain was sentenced Friday to 24 years in prison.

Olof Schoon, 38, pleaded guilty last month to conspiring to smuggle drugs with an estimated value of more than $2.1 billion.

He and two accomplice­s were arrested in June in central England. Police found $21 million worth of cocaine and heroin in secret compartmen­ts in their ambulance.

Detectives say Schoon’s Internatio­nal Ambulance Team — a company complete with offices, fake invoices and a fleet of vehicles — had made 44 similar trips from the Netherland­s to England in the previous 14 months.

Passing sentence Friday at Birmingham Crown Court, Judge Francis Laird said this was “a highly sophistica­ted, meticulous­ly planned and well- executed conspiracy involving the importatio­n of Class A drugs on a truly colossal scale.”

The accomplice­s were jailed for 18 and 25 years. T he j udge s ai d Schoon would have received a longer sentence if he had not pleaded guilty.

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