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will passport scan show up a drug arrest in uk at airport

Travel Forums General Talk will passport scan show up a drug arrest in uk at airport

1. Posted by amy45 (First Time Poster, 1 posts) 10 Nov '12 12:39

im a uk citizen. Recenlty during a baggage search leaving the uk the airport staff found a very small amount of cocaine which was not concealed very well. It was not mine which was the most infurriating thing. It was caught up in a bunch of clip in hair extension that i had lent to a friend. My jaw dropped when they pulled it out and when they asked me what it was i said i didnt know. They continued to search through the rest of my stuff and swabbed everything with all tests coming back clear. I realised that it was probably cocaine given that it was a white powder in a bag and my friend does use cocaine recreationally and i had lent her the hair extensions for a party she went to. So when they asked me again i said i suspected it was cocaine.

I was arrested. The charge was for possesion of a small amount of suspected cocaine to prevent me from leaving the country. I was told the reason i was taken to the police station was to stop me getting that flight (as if i was gonna go on the run and not return for what was less than 1gram), At the police station i was told i would me strip searched for my own safety!!! i was physically searched which involed being touched all over and my top lifted up and skirt pulled up and my tights and knickers pulled away from my body whilst the officer looked inside and felt under the waist band of my underwear. my bra pulled away from my body and felt up underneath. I cried throughout. THEN i was strip searched?? I dont see why i was physically searched so vigorously with my clothes being lifted up so i was part naked i thought that was the ordeal done with. i was horrified when i was taken to another room and Then strip searched. it was very upsetting and i can only describe it as what feels like sexual abuse! being told to remove you clothes when you dont want to and be starred at whilst naked infront of strangers and being asked to lift breasts and bend over etc against my will. It felt completely over the top when i have heard of other people being caught in club loos with coke and police have just given them an on the spot cautions with fixed penalty fine.

I was kept held in a cell for 5 hours whilst my boyfriend was waiting around at the airport. They did not have a drug testing facility so they had to drive to another city to get it tested. When the police officer pulled me in for questioning he said i would get a caution if i admitted it was mine. I told him i wasnt a drug user and have never done drugs and that it wasnt mine. i said they could do a blood test of take some of my hair to prove this. He wasnt interested. He told me that if i denied the coke was mine and tha i didnt know it was in my bag i wouldnt get a caution but instead it would go to court which could result in a conviction and a hefty fine and court costs. Also i would be held at the station alot longer and possibly over night. i said i dont see why i would get a conviction when i am innocent and they could run tests to show i dont do drugs. He replied that its unlikely the magistrates would believe me and i could be charged with possession with the intention to sell. He was putting the fear in me so i would take the caution. i ow realise that 0.4grams of coke would not have me on a charge for dealing! but it could have ended up costly and a worse conviction if he was right about what would happen in court. So the less hassle option and not to leave my boyfriend hanging about the airport any longer was to lie and recieve the caution....(.so much for police wanting the truth and justice).

Anyway after being humiliated, arrested, held for 5 hours and strip searched and having the extra expense of booking a hotel and buying 2 extra over priced flights i arrived back at the airport the following day to travel to my destination. I was sick with panic. I was searched again thoroughly. What i want to know is will i e searched like this every tme i travel?? Will the caution of possesion for personal use be on my passport so that every time my passport is scaned i am flagged??

i have searched through forums and many people say that in the uk your criminal record is not shown on you passport scan unless they do a criminal check (apart from being on a wanted list, warrants etc). But will this show on my passport as i was arrested in the airport? even though its not a criminal conviction, it is a caution??

i cant bare the thought of being searched and groped and having my personal things searched though every time i travel. if thats he case i wont travel again.

2. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru, 3537 posts) 10 Nov '12 16:54

Amy,
What terrible consequences of loaning a friend hair extensions. Unfortunately once drugs are found or suspected, a strip search is next on their list. I can tell it was a horrible, humiliating experience for you. One that you certainly don't want to repeat.

When any foreign country swipes your passport, the only information revealed is the same as your photo page. Instead of reading it off your passport, the Imm. official reads it off the computer. This will let you off the hook for foreign travel. Your passport will not show your caution.

However, there is another problem. The UK will have your name flagged in their computer. Every time you leave or enter the UK, the official will be alerted that you have a drug caution. This happened to a friend of mine. He traveled to many countries w/o a problem. No other country but Canada had a record of his drug conviction. But when he came back to the US, his name was flagged in the computer and detailed his drug conviction. Thorough search of his bags and person. After years of no additional problems, his name was finally deleted from the US computers. Now he travels like everyone else.

Amy, you can test this by leaving the UK again. Buy the cheapest ticket you can that leaves the UK. If they pull you out for inspection, you know you are flagged for additional screening each and every time you leave or enter the UK. It might be worth your time/money to consult with an attorney that specializes in drug and or Immigration issues. They might have an answer to this problem.

Good luck to you Amy and I hope you can continue traveling w/o the extra screening.