A WOMAN from Dalton-in-Furness has been sentenced to four years in prison after pleading guilty to heroin smuggling.

British Government Border Force officers stopped and questioned Naomi Thriepland, 25, of Ann Street, at the Channel Tunnel entrance at Coquelles, France, on December 5, 2011.

Thriepland said she had been in France to 'spend a few days at Disneyland Paris.'

Officers searched the Mercedes car she was driving and found approximately 3.4 kilos of heroin in the hood compartment of the vehicle’s boot. The drugs had an estimated street value of up to £172,000.

Thriepland was bailed while investigations by Border Force officers based at Dover were carried out. At a hearing at Canterbury Crown Court on 22 October 2012 she pleaded guilty, and was sentenced there yesterday.

Malcolm Bragg, from Border Force said: “Drug trafficking is a serious offence and those convicted will face prison sentences. Our message to those who would consider it is that it’s just not worth it.

“Border Force officers will continue to work diligently to keep our border secure and to make life as tough as possible for those who seek to profit from this evil trade.”

Anyone with information about activity they suspect may be linked to drug smuggling should call the hotline on 0800 59 5000 or use http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/aboutus/contact/report-crime/

The Border Force is a law enforcement command within the Home Office responsible for protecting the UK border. Border Force was created on 1 March 2012 after being separated from the UK Border Agency.

Thriepland was charged with being knowingly concerned in the fraudulent evasion or attempted evasion of the prohibition on importation imposed by section 3(1) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 contrary to section 170 (2)(b) of the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979.