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Queen's Troops Arrested Over 'Cocaine Racket' On Week Before Jubilee

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Queen's Troops Arrested Over 'Cocaine Racket' On Week Before Jubilee

Soldiers from the Queen’s bodyguard were arrested over a suspected cocaine racket. 

Six men were serving members of the Irish Guard and were hauled in on suspicions of cocaine dealing and running a loan shark operation.

A seventh man, a former sergeant from the Coldstream Guards was also arrested, the Sun reports. 

The men were set to be involved in the Trooping the Colour of part of the Queen’s platinum jubilee celebrations next Thursday. 

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The soldiers were arrested during dawn raids on Wednesday in Hampshire, Berkshire, North Wales and Northern Ireland in an operation led by Red Cap Royal Military Police.

Credit: Alamy
Credit: Alamy

It is alleged that as well as dealing the Class A drug, the men were involved in a loan shark operation seeing them lend money with sky-high rates and laundering money. 

Five of the men have since been released on bail, while two are still being held. 

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A spokesperson from The Ministry of Defence told the Sun: “As part of a planned operation, the Royal Military Police arrested six Irish Guards soldiers and a Coldstream Guardsman veteran on suspicion of conspiracy to supply drugs and money lending and laundering offences.

“As this is now the subject of an independent Royal Military Police investigation, it is inappropriate to comment further.”

A source from the at Mons Barracks, where the Irish Guards are based, told the publication: “They came in like the DEA (US Drug Enforcement Administration) - kicking down doors.

“There was no warning. We were told they had been planning the operation for months.

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“It wasn’t just the barracks. They searched the soldiers’ homes off base. It’s all come as a huge shock.”

The arrests come as more than 1,400 soldiers and 400 musicians will come together for the Trooping the Colour on Thursday to mark the Queen’s official birthday. 

The Trooping the Colour takes place on Thursday. Credit: Pixabay
The Trooping the Colour takes place on Thursday. Credit: Pixabay

The centuries-old tradition has been attended by the Queen every year since she took to the throne in 1952 - apart from in 1955 when there was a national rail strike. 

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The Parade begins at Horse Guards at 10:00am and will finish by 12:25pm - there will also be a Royal Air Force fly-past at 1:00pm. 

The MoD said the suspects would not be attending the parade - in a statement to the BBC, a spokesperson said: "None of the soldiers under investigation will participate in planned Queen's Platinum Jubilee parades.

"The Army does not tolerate any type of illegal or fraudulent behaviour. As this is now the subject of an independent Royal Military Police investigation, it is inappropriate to comment further."

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: UK News, Crime

Claire Reid
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