A man who had recently lost his job tried to smuggle £360,000 worth of cocaine into the country from Jamaica. 

Gatwick Airport border force officers found 4.5kilos of cocaine in a hidden base of Seth Allen’s suitcase on January 16 this year. 

Allen, 28, of Broad Meadow Lane in Birmingham, told officers he had agreed to smuggle drugs into the country out of desperation. 

The dad-of-two lost his job as a machine setter in late 2023 and was living on just £300 per month Universal Credit. 

On Wednesday (March 13) he appeared at the Old Bailey for sentencing after he pleaded guilty to being concerned in the importation of cocaine. 

Barrister David Forsyth, representing Allen, told the court his client had been anxious to provide for his family as he has two children and a third on the way. 

“When he was offered an opportunity to make financial gain for his family he gave in without thinking of the repercussions,” Mr Forsyth said. 

The court was told that Allen had arrived in Kingston, Jamaica, on Boxing Day and his flight had been paid for by someone higher in the drug chain. 

Allen reportedly got cold feet while he was in Jamaica but eventually went through with the act. 

He refused to tell police the identity of the man he was working for. 

Judge Hillen said: “It’s not too dramatic to say anyone who involves themselves in drug misuse, whether it’s a user in London or Birmingham, or those who are couriers, have blood on their hands... however remotely.” 

He sentenced Allen to six years in custody, of which he will serve half. 

National Crime Agency (NCA) Branch Commander Chris Duplock said: “Organised crime groups rely on couriers like Seth Allen to bring illegal drugs into the UK.

"Working with partners like Border Force we are determined to do all we can to target smugglers and disrupt the criminal networks who recruit them.”