Royal Marine commandos admit involvement in £300,000 drugs operation

Grant Broadfoot and Stuart Bryant were caught using an MOD owned van to transport cannabis from England to Scotland.

Royal Marine commandos Grant Broadfoot and Stuart Bryant admit involvement in £300,000 drugs operation Spindrift

Two Royal Marine commandos have admitted being involved in a £300,000 drugs operation.

Grant Broadfoot, 29, and Stuart Bryant, 31, were caught using an MOD owned van to transport cannabis from England to Scotland on June 3, 2020.

The pair were snared by police in Glasgow’s Mount Vernon with 30 vacuum-sealed bags following “reliable and credible intelligence”.

Grant also took advantage of his role as an ammunitions storeman to flog rounds from HM Faslane naval base to potential buyers using encrypted mobile phone chats.

He boasted that he could use his position in order to source ammunition and arrange transport using vehicles owned by the MOD.

Grant’s accommodation at Faslane was raided and a variety of ammunition was recovered from a Tesco bag.

On Tuesday, Grant pled guilty at the High Court in Glasgow to being involved in serious organised crime which included the offering to supply cannabis as well as the purchase sale and supply of ammunition.

Bryant, of Galston, East Ayrshire, admitted producing cannabis and being concerned in the supply of cannabis.

The crimes of both men took place between November 2019 and June 2020.

Grant’s father and co-accused Ian Broadfoot, 62, pled guilty to being concerned in the supply of cannabis.

The court heard Grant was snared by police during ‘Operation Final’, which was an investigation into him.

Officers were informed that drugs would be transported from England to Scotland by an MOD owned Transit van.

The Transit van driven by Grant and a Renault van driven by Bryant stopped beside each other in the city’s Mount Vernon.

Prosecutor John McElroy said: “Police officers formed the opinion that a drugs handover was taking place.”

Both men were halted by officers, with Grant stating to them: “It’s nothing to do with me.”

Ian was found meantime in the driver’s seat of the Renault.

A search of the Transit recovered 11 vacuum-sealed bags of cannabis while the Renault contained 19 bags.

Grant’s then home in the city’s Baillieston was thereafter raided and £27,370 of cash was found in a brown box.

A search of Ian’s property in Mount Vernon contained £21,030 in mixed notes, a vacuum sealer machine and a bag of cannabis as well as other drug paraphernalia in his garage.

When quizzed, Bryant told officers that he was told to pick up “unknown” items near an MOD training camp in Merseyside in exchange for money.

He stated that he was “suffering significant financial difficulty” and that Grant offered him cash to carry out the task.

Mr McElroy said: “The 30 bags recovered have a total value of approximately £114,000.

“The bag [from Ian’s property] weighing 182.52 grams has a value of approximately £1000.

“The maximum financial community impact if all cannabis recovered was divided into street deals has the potential to realise approximately £301,820.”

Grant’s accommodation at Faslane was searched and a Tesco bag containing live ammunition, casing as well as a large bullet was recovered.

It was revealed Grant conducted his operations using encrypted mobile chats with the username ‘Veteranpants’.

Examples of Grant’s conversations from March to June 2020 were read to the court.

This included organising money drop offs and drivers including Bryant who was unable to perform a job on one occasion due to contracting coronavirus.

Mr McElroy added: “In April 2020 Grant appears to be offering to supply ammunition.

“The significance being that he had access to ammunition at Faslane Naval due to his position as an ammunitions storeman.”

Grant was quoted as telling a potential buyer: “Put the feelers out and if you get a bite I’ll get them, I’m in control of the ammunition.

“It’s just me and a couple of other boys here though, I’d need to file the batch number off each round, I’d do it but.”

He was also noted as telling another contact: “I can sort you out with ammo. I’ve got contacts available.

“I’ve got 7.62 machine gun rounds, 5.56 semi-automatic rounds and 9mm Glock rounds.”

In May 2020, Grant told a contact “I have Ministry of Defence vans” and said that he “signs them out” when he needs them as they have shooting ranges in Liverpool.

Grant was also seen to arrange the collection of drugs “using MOD transport” in June 2020.

Bryant’s conversations also revealed that he had “a much bigger role in transporting drugs” and was compared to Pablo Escobar by the contact.

Louise Arrol, defending first offender Bryant, said: “He was in the Royal Navy for a number of years and has impressive references.

“He recognises, given the offences, he knows he will receive a custodial sentence.”

John Scullion QC, defending Grant, made no motion for bail.

Allan Macleod, defending first offender Ian, said: “It is accepted that he was not involved in the exchanging going on – he just happened to be there.”

Sentence was deferred pending background reports until next month by judge Lady Stacey.

Grant, of the city’s Tollcross, and Bryant were remanded in custody while Ian was bailed meantime.

STV News is now on WhatsApp

Get all the latest news from around the country

Follow STV News
Follow STV News on WhatsApp

Scan the QR code on your mobile device for all the latest news from around the country

WhatsApp channel QR Code