A Coalisland lorry driver has been jailed for people smuggling after an Afghan asylum seeker was found dead in a shipping container in Essex.
Martin McGlinchey, 49, was tried alongside Co Derry Man Stephen McLaughlin at Essex Crown Court, for helping to organise the lorry’s movements and driving the container to Dover.
Meet Singh Kapoor, 40, was found dead inside the container when it arrived at Tilbury Docks from Belgium with 35 men, women and children inside, in August 2014.
It is understood he suffered a heart attack.
Both McGlinchey, from Derryloughlan Road, and 36-year-old Stephen McLaughlin, from Limavady, denied conspiracy to facilitate illegal entry into the UK. But they were found guilty at Basildon Crown Court last Thursday, and handed sentences of eight and nine years.
McLaughin, from Limavady, supplied the lorry and allowed his shipping account to be used for the journey.
Detective Chief Inspector Martin Pasmore, from Essex Police, said: “Vulnerable people seeking help were treated in an appalling way at the hands of these greedy criminals, which prevented any prospect of medical help for Mr Kapoor. My thoughts remain very much with his wife, children, family and friends, and the other surviving asylum seekers who endured such distressing and shocking conditions.”