Drug smuggler Melissa Reid arrives back in UK


Drug mule Melissa Reid has arrived back on home soil after spending nearly three years in jail in Peru.

The 22-year-old Scot arrived at Glasgow Airport at 21:44 on Wednesday after completing the last leg of her journey to the UK from Lima.

Reid, from Lenzie, East Dunbartonshire, was caught in August 2013 with 23-year-old Michaella McCollum, from Dungannon, Co Tyrone, trying to smuggle cocaine worth £1.5 million in food bags from Peru to Spain.

The pair - nicknamed the "Peru Two" - were jailed for six years and eight months after admitting the offence.

But a judge last month ordered Reid to be expelled from the South American country under an early release scheme for deporting first-time drug offenders.

Reid, who is understood to have travelled to Scotland on a flight from Amsterdam, was accompanied by her father Billy.

She did not appear before waiting media at the international arrivals area. It is understood she accepted an airside transfer.

Around 24 hours earlier, Reid smiled as she arrived at Lima Airport on Tuesday evening with her father and British Embassy staff, before being whisked through security by Peruvian officials overseeing her deportation.

Janeth Sanchez, a spokeswoman for Peru's prison service, said that the Scot had "served her time in prison according to the law and can now go to her country, free, to the streets".

A Scottish Prison Service spokeswoman said it is not involved with Reid's case.

McCollum was freed in March under new legislation but was required to remain on parole in Peru for an undisclosed period of time.

The two women had initially claimed they were forced into carrying the drugs - around 24lb (11kg) of cocaine - but then pleaded guilty to the charges.

McCollum and Reid faced the prospect of a maximum 15-year prison term but struck a behind-closed-doors plea bargain to secure the shorter sentence.

Around nine in 10 of the 1,809 foreigners in Peru's prisons are either sentenced or awaiting trials for drug trafficking.

Reid's father has previously said the impact of his daughter's crime on his family had been ''horrendous'', and spoke in a video warning of the consequences of drug offences abroad.

A spokeswoman for the Foreign Office said: "We continue to provide assistance to Melissa Reid and remain in contact with her family and local authorities."

It is understood Reid, who has served about a third of her sentence, will not have a criminal record in the UK as a result of her conviction in Peru.