DRUGS SMUGGLER SUICIDE VERDICT CONFIRMED

The inquest into the death of a suspected drugs smuggler in St Mary's harbour has resulted in a verdict of suicide.

Dutchman Christiaan Woestenburg, 62, died after jumping 40ft from the mast of his yacht Windrose as it was being raided for drugs in 2013. 

 

Cornwall and Isles of Scilly coroner Ian Arrow recorded a suicide verdict at the end of a four-day inquest in Plymouth.

 

A pathologist had previously told the jury that Woestenburg died of head, chest and pelvic injuries after hitting the solid granite quayside.

 

St Mary's harbourmaster Dale Clark said in a statement that Border Force staff told him Woestenburg had been coming and going on deck, drinking from a bottle of beer while they were aboard his yacht.

 

Some 124 packages of suspected cocaine were found in the water tank under the cockpit, with an estimated street value of between £8 and £18 million.

 

The inquest heard that Border Force officers had received intelligence that Dutch authorities considered Woestenburg of interest for "violence, assault and weapons", but not drugs.

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