The former tour director of the British ’90s group Happy Mondays has been arrested in Turkey for a massive cocaine take of $ 100 million, according to a report.
Anthony Murray, 52, was one of 15 arrested after sniffer dogs found more than 500 pounds of Class A drugs hidden in fertilizer bags on a ship from Colombia, the coke capital, said The Sun.
Murray – a longtime close friend of Mondays singer Shaun Ryder – has been dubbed the “doctor” and is accused of being a “managerial level” in the drug operation, sources told the UK newspaper.
“It’s incredibly serious,” a source told the newspaper. “That’s a huge amount of coke – all pure, super strong South American stuff.
“When they arrested him, the police thought his drug gang was called the Happy Mondays – they mistook the group for the gang,” he said of the legendary “Madchester” group known for its drug dependent lifestyle.
The drug shipment was seized on September 30 and Murray is one of nine suspects still in custody, according to the newspaper.
“He was thrown in a cell in Turkey – the last place you would want to be. They are not for the faint of heart, ”the source said, saying the nation takes drug crimes“ seriously ”.
“If he’s found guilty, he won’t be home anytime soon,” the source said.
Murray – who toured with the group “24 Hour Party People” in the ’80s and’ 90s – was sentenced in 2014 to three years in prison for a deal involving 64 pounds of cannabis, The Sun said.
Her son Joel, 23, was also jailed for supplying drugs to Manchester’s famous party scene, while her daughter, Poppy, 28, was suspended as a middleman, the British newspaper said.
The Happy Mondays were a major fixture on the “Madchester” scene with The Stone Roses, mixing the rave scene with indie rock.
After huge successes including the album “Pills ‘n’ Thrills and Bellyaches”, they split up in 1993, reforming several times for subsequent tours and shows.