Chart-topping rapper Nines facing jail after admitting plot to import cannabis

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Chart-Topping Rapper Nines Facing Jail After Admitting Plot To Import Cannabis Chart-Topping Rapper Nines Facing Jail After Admitting Plot To Import Cannabis
Nines, real name Courtney Freckleton (31), pleaded guilty on Thursday to drug and money laundering charges. Photo: PA Archive/PA Images
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Henry Vaughan, PA

Chart-topping rapper Nines is facing jail after admitting a plot to import 28kg of cannabis into the UK from Spain and Poland.

The musician, real name Courtney Freckleton (31) pleaded guilty on Thursday to drugs and money laundering charges.

Nines, who last year topped the UK album chart with his third studio release Crabs In A Bucket, appeared at Harrow Crown Court, in north-west London, alongside Jason Thompson (35).

The pair admitted conspiracy to import the Class B drug cannabis into the UK from Poland and Spain and conspiracy to transfer criminal cash between March 10th and July 3rd last year.

The plot involved one successful importation and a second attempted one, with the total amount of cannabis said to be 28kg, the court heard.

Prosecutor Genevieve Reed said the money laundering charge related to a £98,000 debt as well as the value of the drugs.

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Harrow Crown Court (Yui Mok/PA)

Nines and Thompson both denied two further counts of conspiracy to supply cocaine and conspiracy to supply cannabis and Ms Reed said prosecutors will not be seeking a trial on the charges.

The men were arrested in June after police raids across London and Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, in an operation understood to have stemmed from the infiltration of encrypted messaging service Encrochat.

The network, which was used by thousands of criminals internationally, was brought down by law enforcement last year after being hacked by French investigators.

Nines, of Barbican, central London, and Thompson, of Barnet, north London, are facing lengthy jail sentences and were remanded in custody by Judge Rosa Dean, who adjourned the case for sentencing.

Nines, originally from Harlesden, north-west London, was named best hip hop act at last year’s Mobo Awards.

His chart-topping third album, which beat metal titans Metallica to the top spot on its release, secured album of the year, seeing off competition from Stormzy, J Hus, Lianne La Havas and Mahalia.

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