Haulage boss arrested over death of 39 migrants in lorry container led double life as a drug baron

A HAULAGE boss who led a double life as a drug baron was jailed for nearly 15 years yesterday.

Thomas Maher, 40, conspired to transport £1.5million of cocaine and launder £1million in cash.

He used the encrypted phone network Encrochat at home in Warrington, Cheshire, in his role as logistics manager for major crime gangs, Liverpool crown court heard.

The Irishman was arrested but never charged over the killing of 39 Vietnamese migrants in a lorry container.

Police then put him under surveillance for seven months until they arrested him a second time.

Maher lived in a modest three-bed house but on his driveway he owned a Range Rover, a Land Rover, a sleek, black Mercedes GLS worth £150,000, a BMW and a £70,000 imported Corvette.

He also had a watch collection worth £600,000 and splashed out on holidays, spending £70,000 on breaks in around three years.

The dad-of-three would fly to Dubai, Mexico and New York – business class or first class.

He hired a private helicopter in New York and in Dubai bought a piece of £20,000 art made from bullets.

He admit­ted conspiracy and was jailed for 14 years and eight months.

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