A MAN who smuggled three grams of cannabis into the UK through Southend Airport has been spared jail.

Nicky Campbell, 29, from London, was found with the class B drug at Southend Airport, after flying in from Amsterdam on an EasyJet flight.

He pleaded guilty to possessing the drug at Southend Magistrates'

Court yesterday where a charge of improper importation of goods was withdrawn by the Crown Prosecution Service.

The court heard he arrived in Southend Airport on August 10, ,and was arrested by police for non-payment of £1,500 in driving fines.

Police then found he had drugs and charged him.

Lesley Chipps, prosecuting, said: “He had been to Amsterdam, and while over there bought cannabis and didn’t want to waste it so brought it home. It was for his own personal use.”

The court heard he was due to start a job at Cash Converters in September after being made redundant from a similar job earlier this month.

The court also heard he had a three-year-old daughter and his partner was six months pregnant.

He wanted to stop using the drug.

Shazia Malik, mitigating, said: “This is an isolated incident and a silly mistake by Mr Campbell.”

He was given a six-month conditional discharge and ordered to pay £85 costs and £15 victim surcharge.