Anti-lockdown gym owner exposed as a ‘professional’ criminal on ITV This Morning.
A DRUG DEALER was exposed as a gym owner who boasted on ITV’s This Morning about defying Tier 3 restrictions.
A judge referred to Nicholas Whitcombe as a “professional drug dealer” after he refused to close his Body Tech Fitness location in Moreton during the lockdown.
An investigation by Jersey’s customs and immigration department revealed his involvement in the trafficking scheme.
Whitcombe worked on a plot worth more than £54,000 with Anthony Andrew Dryden, according to the Royal Court of Jersey.
Between 2018 and 2019, the pair, both 31, were involved in a plot to smuggle cannabis resin into Jersey and launder the proceeds, with Whitcombe operating out of Merseyside and Dryden out of Jersey.
The Bailiwick Express reported that prosecutors said Whitcombe would source the drugs and instruct people to send them from England to a third party at their work address in Jersey.
The packages were then picked up by Dryden, who sold them, collected the money, and returned it to Whitcombe’s UK addresses.
According to the Liverpool Echo, between June and September 2018, 3.1kg of marijuana was imported into Jersey, with three cash exports totaling £16,750.
After Whitcombe’s contacts sent a package to the wrong address, there appeared to be a “cooling off” period before Whitcombe told Dryden in December 2018 that he was handing over the UK side of their scheme to a friend.
Dryden then imported an estimated 500g to 1kg of cannabis using that contact in March 2019, and thanked Whitcombe for assisting in the establishment of the new supply line.
Dryden was also involved in the importation of 451.69g of cannabis resin by itself in June of this year.
The following month, Dryden was apprehended, and his phone was confiscated.
The phone revealed text messages between him and Whitcombe detailing their exploits and Whitcombe’s money-laundering advice to Dryden.
“You get to clean your money and you’ll slowly get better at it and eventually it’ll be your legit business,” Whitcombe, of Birkenhead, texted.
After a two-year hiatus, Dryden was apprehended again in July 2021, and Whitcombe was apprehended, brought back to Jersey, and charged.
They were sentenced on Wednesday in front of Deputy Bailiff Robert MacRae, Jurats Jerry Ramsden, Joanne Kim Averty, and Gareth Hughes.
Crown Advocate Richard Pedley, who represents the prosecution, made a recommendation to the.
“Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”