How not to smuggle tobacco into the country: Bungling students caught after taking pictures of themselves packing it into suitcases
- Three men from Leicester detained at Heathrow after Police received tip-off
- Customs officers found photos on phones of them posing with contraband
- Each had five suitcases with total of 291kg of tobacco
- Pleaded guilty to tobacco smuggling and conspiracy offences
By William Cook
PUBLISHED: 11:18 EST, 12 November 2012 | UPDATED: 12:24 EST, 12 November 2012
Three students were caught smuggling nearly £60,000 worth of shisha tobacco - after taking photos of themselves packing it into suitcases
The gang's teenage leader and his two accomplices have been sentenced for their role in a 'get rich quick' plot to smuggle the 300kg of shisha tobacco from Dubai to the UK.
The trio were detained on arrival at Heathrow airport, after officials received a tip-off.
Three men were arrested after posing for photos with the tobacco they were trying to smuggle into the UK
Asking for trouble: Muhibur Rahman (pictured) poses with the tobacco next to one of the trio's fifteen suitcases
When customs officers confiscated the students' mobile phones they discovered an image of one of the smugglers - Muhibur Rahman - posing in a Dubai hotel room with the tobacco.
Sahil Sheikh, 19, an undergraduate at Leicester's De Montfort University, masterminded the criminal operation and recruited two accomplices to help him transport the tobacco.
He covered the costs of travel, hotels and the tobacco itself and organised its sale in the UK.
When arrested, Sheikh, fellow De Montfort student Muhibur Rahman, and Dawood Walilay, from Rugby, Warwickshire, each had five suitcases containing a total of £291kg of tobacco.
Isleworth Crown Court, West London, heard all three were of previous good character.
Mastermind: Sahil Sheikh, 19, led, organised and funded 'what he thought was a sophisticated plot'
Accomplice: Sheikh (left) recruited Dawood Walilay (right) and Muhibur Rahman to help transport the shisha
Sheikh was sentenced to 28 weeks in jail, suspended for 18 months, and ordered to carry out 180 hours of unpaid work.
Rahman, 21, was sentenced to 120 hours of unpaid work, and Walilay, 20, to 150 hours.
All three had pleaded guilty to tobacco smuggling and conspiracy offences under the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979 at an earlier hearing.
HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), which carried out the investigation said the revenue due on the shisha tobacco - smoked using a water pipe - was about £58,300.
John Cooper, assistant director of
criminal investigation for HMRC, said: 'Sheikh led and organised what he
thought was a sophisticated plot, along with his gang members, to get
rich quick by lining his own pockets through smuggling and selling
illicit tobacco to the Leicestershire community.
'In effect, he stole taxpayers' cash by not paying duty on the goods.'
Isleworth Crown Court heard the trio, including Dawood Walilay (pictured), were of previous good character
Tip off: The gang were detained on arrival at Heathrow airport, where Customs officers found the photos
Headlines Newsview all
Christ Embassy Church Issues Gets Hotter As Pastor Oyakhilome's Brother Rev. Ken, Impregnates His South African Mistress
The crisis rocking the Christ Embassy Church is about to get messier as The Nigerian Times claims that Rev. Ken Oyakhilome, younger brother of Pastor ... Full story
Pastor Chris Oyakhilome's Divorce Getting Messier: Christ Embassy Deletes All Anita Oyakhilome's Data From Website
Latest findings indicates that Pastor Chris Oyakhilome of the Christ Embassy has removed every information about his estranged wife, Anita from the church’s website. This is ... Full story
Wife of Enugu State governor, Mrs. Clara Chime, who, last year, quit the Governor’s Lodge, where she lived with Governor Sullivan Chime after she alleged ... Full story
Rate this article
- NDE trains 100 youths on technological skills
- VIDEO: Olisa Adibua Debuts "THE TRUTH" With WizKid
- NFF: Amadu threatened with arrest, Giwa files FIFA defence
One thing is clear; the respected Yoruba traditional ruler married these four women legitimately, by going to their individual family and paying the bribe price ...
Recently, there has been a serious war between Shan George and the London-based music promotion outfit of his son, Jaga, Babylynn Promotions, over the release ...
Do you have a story/gist for publication? Please email it to email@example.com abeylyncon | 9/1/2014 10:23:01 AM This is the 1st time am seeing Anty Tiwa in ...
This new video "Ejeajo" is nothing but testament to that fact. Raising the bar a bit higher this time around, PSquare went all out to ...
Last Friday, Former President Olusegun Obasanjo paid a condolence visit to former Oyo State governor, Senator Rashidi Ladoja, at his Ondo Street residence in Bodija, ...
The widely reported Boko Haram insurgency attack on Wednesday 20thAugust 2014 at a Nigerian Police training college in Gwoza, Borno State left few survivors. Omereji ...
Nollywood actor, Charles Awurum must have a strong fan base with the ladies more than the males. In a recent interview when he was asked ...
Yoruba actress and ex-wife of actor Saidi Balogun, Fathia Balogun Williams is now a proud owner of a beauty and wine shop named 'House of ...
Celebrity stylist, Toyin Lawani has called out women who do nothing but gossip, do senseless conversation, chain smoking, drink excessively and have friends who do ...
Nollywood actress, Stella Damasus, best known for her social media activism on the challenging issues facing the country, has relaxed her voice as she is ...