A woman who served as a drugs mule is beginning a 16 month prison sentence after concealing Class A drugs worth more than £5,000 as she came off the NorthLink ferry at Lerwick.
Violet Robertson, 47, of the town’s Norgaet was handed the custodial term after she previously admitted being concerned in the supply of cocaine and heroin.
She was found out at the NorthLink ferry terminal and in June this year.
Robertson previously admitted having the drugs at the terminal and elsewhere when she appeared in the dock at Lerwick Sheriff Court.
This week, Sheriff Ian Cruickshank was told Robertson had been used as a mule by other people who were preying on her.
Procurator fiscal Duncan MacKenzie said police attended at the scene after receiving “specific information” of a woman heading to the isles who had been internally concealing controlled substances.
Robertson matched the description they had been given.
The court heard the accused was taken to hospital after being detained for a medical examination.
There she produced two packages containing the illegal substances.
Under interview, she confirmed she had been given the drugs the day before in Aberdeen, and was taking them to Shetland to pass on to someone.
Robertson told the police: “It’s not mine – it doesn’t belong to me. I’ve done the dirty work in bringing it up.”
Mr MacKenzie said it had been “clear from the outset” that Robertson would be pleading to the offence.
Defence agent Tommy Allan described the case as “depressingly straightforward”.
He said a background report pointed to Robertson being a “vulnerable individual” who has a high level of need. He added people had taken advantage of her.
Sheriff Cruickshank told Robertson: “The grim reality is you became involved in the supply of Class A drugs because of your own addiction and your own drug debts.
“I completely accept you were pressured to become a courier and had no real influence on those above you in the supply chain.
“But the law is clear that in all but the most exceptional cases supply of Class A drugs would lead to a custodial sentence.”