Men tried to move £10m of cocaine in lorry carrying Belgian waffles

James Davidson, David Mullarkey, Ellis Hardy and Wayne Smith were caught at a Glasgow industrial estate in 2019.

Men tried to move £10m of cocaine in lorry carrying Belgian waffles iStock
Guilty: Four men admit trying to move and distribute £10m of high-purity cocaine.

Four men were caught attempting to move and distribute £10m of cocaine hidden in a lorry carrying Belgian waffles. 

James Davidson, 58, David Mullarkey, 47, Ellis Hardy, 42, and Wayne Smith, 39, were caught after detectives swooped at Hillington Industrial Estate in Glasgow on June 22 2019.

They were shifting the huge 30kg high-purity haul from a HGV truck to a transit van at the site where Mullarkey ran a kitchen firm.

Davidson had earlier driven the lorry which appeared to be legitimately transporting £15,000 of Belgian waffles.

However, it emerged the consignment had been hidden in secret specially-adapted compartments in both vehicles.

The four had been due to stand trial, but on Tuesday each pled guilty to a charge of being involved in the transportation and distribution of cocaine.

They were remanded in custody and will learn their fate next month.

The High Court in Glasgow heard how police had initially been keeping tabs on Hardy.

He and Smith were first clocked together in a Transit van the day before the raid.

They eventually travelled to Hillington Industrial Estate where Davidson had also driven to in his HGV.

Mullarkey, who ran DM Kitchens at the industrial estate, was also spotted.

Police then heard banging, sawing and drilling between both vehicles.

It was soon after officers moved in on the four.

Prosecutor Greg Farrell said: “The cocaine recovered from within the Transit van had previously been concealed in the HGV driven by Davidson.

“Both had been adapted to create concealed spaces. 

“On June 22, at DM Kitchens, the four were in the process of removing the cocaine from the lorry and secreting it in the Transit van for onward distribution.”

The taped packages of drugs had a purity of up to 84%.

Mr Farrell said the cocaine had a potential value of £9.96m.

Police also found encrypted mobile phones, but were unable to access any data on them.

Mullarkey’s lawyer Dale Hughes told the hearing on Tuesday: “He was the owner of the premises. At the time, he was in difficult financial circumstances.”

Sentencing on Davidson, of Yoker, Glasgow, Mullarkey, of Stepps, Lanarkshire, as well as Hardy and Smith, both of Mitcham, London, was deferred for reports until February 15 in Edinburgh.

Judge Jamie Gilchrist also continued consideration of the four being hit with Serious Crime Prevention Order curfews.