Joe Calzaghe's model ex faces jail after helping move £5m in luggage as cops hunt ringleader of £104m smuggling ring | The Sun

THE glamour model ex of boxer Joe Calzaghe is facing jail over her role in a £104million cash smuggling ring as cops hunt the kingpin.

Jo-Emma Larvin, 44, moved £5million in her luggage when flying business class from London to Dubai over two trips.

In her first, the model, who dated Calzaghe for six years until 2009, had £2.2million in seven suitcases when travelling with Amy Harrison, 27.

Her Welsh boxer ex was not involved in the cash smuggling network.

Larvin and her partner Jonathan Johnson, 55, also flew from Heathrow with £2.8million crammed in eight suitcases in September 2020, using holiday items to disguise the bung.

Smugglers were paid £3,000 per trip and treated to an all-expenses-paid holiday in the UAE, a court heard.

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They were recruited into the racket by "kingpin" Michelle Clarke, 42, who is still on the run from the National Crime Agency in Dubai.

The mum-of-two set up the "Sunshine and Lollipops" WhatsApp group to organise her mules.

They would fly business so they could take more luggage with them, stuffing English and Scottish notes in their checked-in suitcases.

It also meant they could check in later, lowering their chances of being caught.

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They declared cash once arriving in Dubai, handing over a letter authorising them to carry it from a company called Omnivest, a court heard.

Larvin denied any wrongdoing and claimed she believed she was flying out millions of pounds for the UAE Embassy.

But she and Johnson, of Ripon, North Yorkshire, were unanimously convicted of removing criminal property from the UK at Isleworth Crown Court yesterday.

Their trial heard Larvin sent messages to Johnson saying she was "in at the deep end".

Johnson is said to have told her: "You need to be super careful," adding: "I like your enterprise but the threat of clink [sic]" – slang for jail.

He also messaged Larvin two days before a trip to Dubai, saying taking eight suitcases with them was "taking the p**s".

Larvin told jurors it was the "worst decision" of hers and Johnson's lives to take the cash.

She now describes herself as a safari specialist and wildlife photographer.

NCA investigators who smashed the smuggling ring found couriers had carried £104m out of the country on 83 Emirates flights from Heathrow to Dubai.

Larvin and Johnson were convicted alongside Beatrice Auty, 26, from Fulham, West London.

Liam Rabone, 29, of West Kensington, was cleared of the charge.

Kingpin Abdulla Alfalasi, 48, from Dubai, was jailed for more than nine years last July after he was nicked at an apartment in swanky Belgravia, central London.

Recruitment consultant Tara Hanlon, 32, described as a "Kim Kardashian-lookalike", was caged for nearly three years in 2022 for money laundering offences.

Mum-of-two Michelle Clarke, 42, who is said to have recruited Auty, is on the run.

Amy Harrison was also convicted of the same charge alongside Larvin, Johnson and Auty.

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They were not deemed a flight risk so were bailed and will be sentenced at a later date.

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