AN airline passenger has appeared in a Tyneside court accused of smuggling cocaine into the North East at the weekend.
Sascha Zimmermann, 29, was stopped by UK Border Force officials after arriving at Newcastle Airport on Sunday evening.
A search of the German national’s luggage found two smaller bags inside, which were lined with what turned out to be several kilograms of the Class A drug.
It is believed the haul could have had a potential street value of up to £250,000.
Zimmerman, who has previously lived in Amsterdam in the Netherlands, had landed at Newcastle on a flight from Paris, France.
At a hearing at Newcastle Magistrates’ Court yesterday, Stuart Rook, prosecuting, said: “On June 6 at Newcastle Airport he had with him a suitcase.
“In the case were a couple of rucksacks. They were examined by officers and in the lining of the rucksacks they found between three and five kilograms of cocaine.
“This was sent off to be tested and has been confirmed as cocaine.”
Dressed in a dark suit and white shirt, Zimmermann spoke only to confirm his name during the 10-minute hearing.
He is charged with being involved in the attempted importation of illegal drugs.
Zimmermann, of no fixed abode in this country, was represented during the hearing by Lewis Pearson who told the court his client would not be entering a plea at this stage.
District judge Stephen Earl declined jurisdiction and adjourned the hearing. Zimmermann is due to appear back at the court on June 14 via video link.