A sweet, elderly Perth couple with two readily trusting hearts, one dial-up connection and zero scruples were dealt a dud hand by Life earlier this month when it became apparent that an all-expenses paid trip to Canada they won on The Internet turned out to be little more than an elaborate ruse designed to make unwitting elders out to be unsuspecting drug mules capable of smuggling $7 million worth of methamphetamine into the country. Life!

The long con, described by police as one of the most elaborate they’d ever encountered, saw the couple fly to Canada as the recipients of a weeks worth of free accommodation and new luggage from the totally legit-sounding, now-defunct AusCan Tours. Upon returning to Australia, the couple became suspicious of their shiny new suitcases and turned them over to customs, who then discovered 3.5kg of crystal meth in each.

One half of the couple only willing to be identified as Sue, 64, said she and her husband, 72, entered a competition online and readily accepted the offer of a free holiday after the Nigerian Prince of their dreams got in touch with them to let them know they’d won the all-expenses paid getaway. 

“Be very careful if you win anything,” warned Sue. “I could have ended up in jail for 25 years, and they could have ruined my life. So be very wary, be very careful and check everything out.”

A 38-year-old Canadian man the couple were going to meet at the airport on their return has been arrested on drug trafficking offences and will no doubt encounter a colourful cast of ragamuffin street urchins in prison before writing a bestselling memoir about life without poutine on the inside.

via The Guardian