‘Desperate’ American husband, 35, is spared jail after smuggling three suitcases of cannabis into the UK to pay for his pregnant wife’s medical care in Texas
- Coryon Ross had five packages of cannabis inside three suitcases at Heathrow
- His wife was pregnant and pair were being evicted in Texas, the court heard
- Ross admitted the charges and was handed a six-month suspended sentence
A ‘desperate’ American husband has been spared jail after smuggling three suitcases of cannabis into the UK to pay for his pregnant wife’s medical care in Texas.
Coryon Ross, 35, was stopped by customs officials at Heathrow Airport after arriving in London from Chicago in January.
Upon searching his luggage, they found eight pounds of skunk cannabis worth around £12,000 in five packages, Isleworth Crown Court heard.
Ross had travelled with three suitcases – a black, a blue and a grey – which were ripped open with bolt cutters when he refused to hand over the keys.
The sports therapist had acted out of ‘desperation’ as his wife was pregnant and the couple did not have any healthcare in the US, the court heard.
Coryon Ross, 35, was stopped by customs officials at Heathrow Airport after arriving in London from Chicago in January. Pictured: Heathrow Airport
It was said the pair had lost all their money after falling victim to fraud and were in the process of being evicted.
Ruxana Nasser, prosecuting, said: ‘He admitted he has carried those drugs into the UK. As a courier he gained $4,000 by this transaction.’
Liam Loughin, defending Ross, said the man’s wife had been diagnosed with pre-eclampsia – a condition that causes high blood pressure during pregnancy and after labour.
He said: ‘His wife is pregnant, she is now diagnosed with pre-eclampsia. They had lost one child due to miscarriage.
‘They are in Texas and, having taken instructions from Mr Ross, they do not have any healthcare and they do not have any sort of provision for her pregnancy which is expected to cost huge amounts of money.’
Mr Loughin added the couple had lost all their money after falling victims to fraud and were currently in the process of being evicted.
Upon searching his luggage, they found eight pounds of skunk cannabis worth around £12,000 in five packages, Isleworth Crown Court heard
‘In Texas there is no provision for emergency housing,’ he added. ‘He was in a desperate situation and had never been in trouble with the law before.’
‘He found himself in a desperate situation most of us in this country will never have to face. We will always be cared for, if not ideally.
‘Unfortunately that is not the case in the United States.’
Judge Jonathan Ferris told Ross: ‘You have pleaded guilty to the importation of cannabis.
‘This was on the basis of a one-off escapade to rise out of your extreme financial distress and the particular domestic difficulties you were under at the time which continue.
‘You are 35 years old and a citizen of the United States, you are resident in Texas, perhaps not the best state to be resident in the United States.
‘You have no previous convictions in the United States, which is supported from a number of documents.
‘The one-off escapade was in order to earn a small sum of money, $4,000 in order to pay the medical bills for your wife who is diagnosed with pre-eclampsia.’
Ross, from Texas, admitted evading a prohibition on the importation of a controlled drug. He was given a six-month sentence, suspended for 18 months.