Lorry driver jailed for acting as cocaine courier

Daniel Harvie appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh. Picture: Bill Henry
Daniel Harvie appeared at the High Court in Edinburgh. Picture: Bill Henry
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A lorry driver has been jailed for three years and three months today after he was caught acting as a courier for cocaine.

Daniel Harvie was seen taking part in a drugs handover at a supermarket before he was stopped with more cocaine in the boot of his Mercedes car.

A judge told Harvie at the High Court in Edinburgh: “The trafficking of drugs is a vile and evil trade.”

Lord Boyd of Duncansby said: “You were prepared to participate in it by delivering packages containing very significant quantities of cocaine with a street value estimated to be £100,000.”

The judge said more important was the damage caused to individuals and communities by drugs.

Lord Boyd told first offender Harvie, 57: “I am prepared to accept that your role was confined to acting as a courier and you did so under the direction of others.

The judge told Harvie, of New Well Wynd, Linlithgow, in West Lothian, that he would have faced a four and a half year prison sentence but for his guilty plea.

Harvie had earlier admitted being concerned in the supply of the Class A drug at St Leonard’s Street and Grange Road, in Dunfermline, in Fife and on the A90 road on March 29 last year.

The court heard that following a surveillance operation information had been received that another man was due to take delivery of a significant amount of drugs, but it was not known who would bring them or from where.

The target was seen driving his van to a car park at Asda at St Leonards Street.

Harvie got out of his car and went to the driver’s window of the van and spoke to the occupant before handing him a carrier bag.

The other man drove off and Harvie went back to his Mercedes and was seen looking in the boot before he also drove off.

Officers requested that both vehicles should be stopped and Harvie was detained and taken to Dunfermline police station.

A laptop bag was found in the boot of his car containing a taped package wrapped in newspaper. It was found to contain just under a kilo of cocaine.

A similar package containing a further kilo of the drug was found after the other man was stopped by police.

Drug officers said that if the quantities found were broken down into street deals the cocaine had the potential to realise about pounds 100,000.

Harvie was found to have pounds 320 in cash in his coat.

Defence solicitor advocate Iain Paterson said Harvie was an HGV driver but had undergone eye surgery and a knee operation which led to him being off work for about six months.

His savings were rapidly eaten into and pounds 300 was to be made from the transaction.

Mr Paterson said: “This was a catastrophic error of judgement. He is extremely sorry he did this. It was to an extent an impulsive act as a result of his financial troubles.”

The defence lawyer said Harvie had no idea of the value or the nature of the drugs concerned.

He said Harvie had been assessed as a low risk of re-offending and added: “I would submit it is highly unlikely he will get into trouble again.”

“He has been a good citizen to this country, He has worked hard,” said Mr Paterson.