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Nathan Baggaley: Former Olympian guilty of plotting to smuggle €130 million of cocaine

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Nathan Baggaley claiming a silver medal in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens
Nathan Baggaley claiming a silver medal in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens   -   Copyright  MARK J. TERRILL/AP
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A former Olympian and his brother have been found guilty of trying to smuggle €130 million worth of cocaine into Australia.

Nathan Baggaley, who is a three-time world champion canoeist, was tried alongside his brother Dru, for attempting to import 650 kilos of cocaine in 2018.

Nathan Baggaley won two canoeing silver medals at the 2004 Athens Olympics.

Before the latest case the 45-year-old’s career was tarnished with drugs scandals. He tested positive for banned steroids in 2005, and was also jailed 10 years laters with his brother Dru for his part in a drug manufacturing syndicate.

The Baggaley brothers were found guilty of smuggling cocaine by a jury at Brisbane Supreme Court after around eight hours of deliberations on Thursday.

They will be sentenced on a date yet to be decided by the court.

During the case prosecutors alleged Dru Baggaley was on board a boat that collected the cocaine from a bigger ship on 31 July 2018.

Nathan Baggaley, 45, was not on the boat at the time, but the court heard he bought the boat and helped to plan the crime, according to 9News in Australia.

Video from a surveillance plane, released by authorities, showed the small boat approaching a large foreign ship a few hundred kilometres off the Australian coast.

Prosecutors said Dru Baggaley and another man, Anthony Draper, were heading back to shore when a police boat gave chase.

Bags of drugs were tossed overboard as the two men fled, but these were recovered by police.

Video showed police, with guns drawn, eventually arresting the two men on their boat.