A drugs baron has been jailed after his operation was brought down when an OAP mule was caught carrying heroin in her shopping bag full of – CORNISH PASTIES.
Stephen Blundell, 36, was the leader of a £2.3 million heroin racket involved in supplying narcotics to large parts of England.
He used the cash to live a champagne lifestyle with a luxury flat and fleet of posh cars.
But his network of organisers, couriers and dealers were brought down by Teresa Wood, 63, of Bodmin, Cornwall.
She was stopped by police and found with £50,000 of drugs in a shopping bag full of pasties that she was planning to have for dinner.
The supply chain eventually led back to Blundell and his empire began to unravel.
Blundell had been on the run for nearly two years but handed himself into police in Tenerife and was flown back to the UK last week where he has now been jailed.
He was given an extra eight months on top of his nine years eight month sentence when he was brought back to court in Exeter, Devon.
The gang was broken up in 2012 by a surveillance operation run by Devon and Cornwall Police codenamed Raby.
DC Jason Braud, who led the undercover operation, said Blundell enjoyed the high-life, wearing designer clothes and driving luxury cars, including a Porsche Boxer, Audis, BMWs and Volkswagen 4x4s.
He also spent #11,000 in cash on foreign travel in a three-month period but had no obvious income or employment.
He said his arrest had a large impact on the supply of class A drugs into the region.
DC Braund said: “He lived in very swanky rented apartments and had access to high value sports cars. He maintained a lavish lifestyle and there were exotic holidays with girlfriends.
“In his wardrobe, everything was designer – it was all top-of-the-range stuff. He was living the lavish lifestyle and it would appear as soon as he got that cash it was being spent.
“The removal of this supply chain certainly had a knock-on impact on the streets of Devon and Cornwall.”
The rest of Blundell’s gang were jailed for a total of more than 70 years in April 2013.