Trio remanded on lobster pot cocaine plot charge

Three men appeared in court today charged with conspiracy to import cocaine into Britain after £8 million worth of the drug was found attached to lobster pots off the coast, according to the Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca).

The trio were arrested in Yarmouth on the Isle of Wight last weekend in a joint operation involving Hampshire and Isle of Wight Police, Soca and the UK Border Agency.

A member of the public spotted rucksacks attached to the pots off the south coast on Sunday morning.

About 441lb (200kg) of cocaine, with an estimated street value of £8 million, was discovered after the rucksacks were recovered from the sea.

Jamie Green, 42, Veljko Protic, 34, and Daniel Payne, 35, appeared at Portsmouth Magistrates' Court after being charged with conspiracy to import cocaine.

All were remanded in custody to appear again at the same court on June 9.