Man jailed for smuggling £400,000 of cannabis through Hornsey in grand piano

11:34 11 May 2012

The cannabis was hidden inside a grand piano.

The cannabis was hidden inside a grand piano.

Archant

»A drug smuggler who stashed more than £400,000-worth of cannabis in a grand piano has been jailed for six years.

Evan Masson, 34, arranged for the consignment to be shipped from his native South Africa to a disused warehouse in Tottenham Lane, Hornsey.

The former sound engineer boasted to a friend in a text: “My sh** arrived today. Will be in my hands probably by Tuesday. We’ll never go hungry again.”

He enlisted construction boss and fellow South African Brian Beangstrom, 60, of Wightman Road, Harringay, to help him transport the consignment, paying him just £360 to help out.

But they were caught red-handed by customs officers as they prised open the piano crate at the Hornsey warehouse last October.

The shipment – containing 143.9kgs of the class B drug worth £414,000 on the street – had been under surveillance for a week after it was intercepted by UK Border Agency officials in Felixstowe.

Masson, of Drayton Park, Highbury, took a leading role in organising the drug shipment and stood to make a “significant financial reward” said Judge Timothy Pontius.

His defence counsel claimed in court his “dire financial situation was the catalyst” for the crime.

Scott Ivill, defending father-of-two and grandfather Beangstrom, said his client believed until a late stage that they were collecting a family heirloom.

Sentencing him to 18 months in prison, Judge Pontius told Beangstrom: “It is a tragedy that someone of mature years with a commendable employment background and your lack of significant previous offences should be tempted into crime of this scale for paltry reward.”

Both men had admitted conspiracy to supply cannabis and will be deported to South Africa upon release.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest Crime news

Friday, February 12, 2016
Simpson-Kent was captured in Ghana after fleeing the UK following the death of his partner Sian Blake and their two children (Photo: Metropolitan Police/PA Wire)

Sian Blake’s partner has been arrested on suspicion of the murders of the ex-EastEnders actress and their two children, police have said.

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Police are investigating attempted child abductions

A man has been charged after reports that a number of schoolchildren were approached by someone impersonating a police officer in Hornsey.

Thursday, February 11, 2016
Police would like to speak with this man (Picture: Metropolitan Police)

A 27-year-old man was punched in the face and pummelled as he lay on the ground in a sustained and unprovoked attack at a Bloomsbury bus stop.

Thursday, February 11, 2016
The two men police want to identify

A horrifying attack in Shoreditch has left a man with a fractured skull after he was beaten with wooden stakes.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016
The victim's purse had £50 in it (Credit: PA/Jon Giddens)

An elderly woman has had her purse stolen from her handbag as she shopped in Uxbridge town centre, and now police have released video of the ‘damaging’ crime to make sure the thief “faces justice for what they have done”.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016
Usman Tahir, who was sentenced to serve 12 years in jail. Credit: Met Police

A vile opportunist who tried to rape two vulnerable women late at night has been jailed for 12 years.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Sony Smart Ultra HD 55'' LED TV

Enjoy the ultimate entertainment experience in your living room with the Sony Smart Ultra 55’’ LED TV. Be the envy of all your friends with this huge TV- you can change your living room into your own cinema! Get the boys around to watch the football or get the girls around to watch the DVD of 50 Shades.. this is a prize that everyone would enjoy! Stand a chance to upgrade your current entertainment system by wining this fantastic prize.

Read more
Surface Pro 4

Technology is ever evolving. We are constantly being shown new technology that is innovative, revolutionary and designed to make life easier for us all. Gone are the days of dial up modems and computers so large you needed half a room to store it. We are in the age of smooth, small and sleek. Companies are all trying their best to create technology that is easy to transport and guaranteed to be user friendly.

Read more

Latest Tech News

Transport