Drugs mule Melissa Reid from Lenzie ‘hopeful’ after accomplice is freed

Melissa Reid
Melissa Reid

Drugs mule Melissa Reid who has been behind bars in Peru for almost three years, says she is hopeful after her accomplice’s release.

The 22-year-old from Lenzie, jailed for smuggling £1.5 million of cocaine in 2013, has told her family the freeing of Michaella McCollum several days ago is a ‘positive sign’ as she waits to hear if judges will bring forward her hearing.

After the release of Northern Irish woman McCollum, Melissa said in a phone call to her mother Debbie: “It’s great news for Michaella. I’m delighted. I so hope it’s me next.”

Mrs Reid told a Sunday newspaper the news of McCollum’s release had come as a ‘complete shock’ to her and husband, Billy.

She added: ”We share her enthusiasm and really hope this is it, that we’ll finally get our daughter back home with us to restart her life again.

“We’re absolutely delighted for Michaella. Melissa will miss her because they’ve been through a lot together.”

McCollum, 23, was freed on parole from the Ancon 2 jail on Thursday, almost three years after the pair were caught with 24lb of cocaine in suitcases at Lima airport.

Both were sentenced to six years and eight months in jail after pleading guilty but they followed different legal avenues in their bids for freedom.

McCollum must report to authorities each month and remain in Peru while she waits for a judicial hearing to decide her long-term fate.

Reid is holding out for formal ‘expulsion’ from Peru so she can return home.

The Scottish Prison Service has already agreed to a request from Reid’s legal team for an arrangement where she would serve the rest of her sentence in Scotland.

Despite at first appearing to agree, nothing more was heard on the subject from authorities in Peru.

Mrs Reid said her daughter had not breathed a word of McCollum’s impending release, despite being in touch with her family in daily calls.

Mrs Reid said: ”None of us knew anything about it. Melissa didn’t breathe a word, not even the night before, when she called home to sing Happy Birthday to her father.”

Speaking to the Mail on Sunday, Mrs Reid added: ”She knew about Michaella’s hearing the next day because they have been sharing a cell again recently. But she was sworn to secrecy and kept her word to protect her friend.

“We share her enthusiasm and really hope this is it, that we’ll finally get our daughter back home to restart her life again. It is going to be an anxious wait for news now.

“This has reawakenend all the old feeling of anxiety, but we’re absolutely delighted for Michaella.”

Both girls claimed they were forced to carry the drugs after being caught in the sphere of drug dealers in Ibiza, Spain, where they had been living.