FOUR former workers from the Port of Tilbury have been charged with conspiring to import cocaine.
The four were arrested by National Crime Agency officers in June 2016, following an investigation into a number of drug importations alleged to have gone through the port between February and July 2015. They answered bail yesterday.
Dean Pogmore, 42, from Stanford-le-Hope, Essex, Brett Toogood, 25, from Grays, Essex, Gary Walker, 32, from Grays and Peter Simmons, 39, from East Tilbury have all been bailed to appear before Basildon Magistrates on 4 May.
Toogood is additionally charged with three counts of money laundering, while his partner, Nicola Scott, 48, also from Grays has also been charged with money laundering.
The NCA investigation follows an operation by the Metropolitan Police Service, supported by the NCA, which resulted in the seizure of almost 200 kilos of cocaine in Essex in July 2015. Four people were subsequently convicted and given jail sentences totaling 57 years.
Matthew Rivers, from the National Crime Agency’s border investigations unit, said:
“This is a long and complex investigation into offences alleged to have taken place at Tilbury, and we are grateful for the vital assistance provided by the port authorities.
“Protecting the security and integrity of the UK border is a priority. The NCA and our partners in the public and private sectors remain determined to root out corruption and stop those who would seek to circumvent border controls for criminal purposes.”