'They think they're stars' - Lawyer slams Peru drug mules

'They think they're stars' - Lawyer slams Peru drug mules Michaella McCollum and Melissa Reid for media attention

International lawyer condemns the media attention the two have received since their arrest

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Senior Lawyer Stefano Lucatello has slammed the media attention received by British drug mules Michaella McCollum and Melissa Reid.

This follows the announcement Reid is on her way back to the UK after three years in a Peruvian jail. Her and McCollum were arrested in 2013 after being caught with an estimated £1.5m worth of cocaine at Lima airport.

After striking a plea deal, their sentences were reduced to just over six years. Both have been released from prison, with Reid expelled from Peru last month, and McCollum remaining in Peru for an undisclosed period of time.

Lucatello, a senior partner at Kobalt Law, didn't hold back.

"I think a lot has been made out of the media publicity and they think they're stars now," he told Julia Hartley-Brewer. "RTE interviewed McCollum earlier this year, she came across - as far as I was concerned - as false, which was later proven to be true.

"The other has taken a more low-key approach, but I have no sympathy as a lawyer, and I don't condone any of the media attention these two have had. 

"They knew exactly what they were doing, however young they were."

Despite the high profile nature of their case, Lucatello was sure it wouldn't work as a deterrent. 

"This happens only too often," he added. "People know about these situations and it's worldwide. 

"I daresay they won't be the last to try this."