Northern Ireland

Piers Morgan tells drugs mule Michaella McCollum to stop whining and give book money to charity

Michaella McCollum on Good Morning Britain
Michaella McCollum on Good Morning Britain

BROADCASTER Piers Morgan has told Co Tyrone drugs mule Michaella McCollum to "stop whining" and give money from her book sales to anti-drug charities.

Ms McCollum said she did not expect to make more than £2,000 from her memoir about her time in a Peruvian jail for drugs smuggling and she hoped others would learn from her mistake.

The mother-of-two appeared on Good Morning Britain yesterday to publicise her book You'll Never See Daylight Again.

She claimed the media had portrayed her in an "un-nice" manner and her private life should not have been reported on during her trial and conviction.

Mr Morgan questioned how she thought the media should have portrayed her.

"I don't know how to break this to you but when you are a £1.5 million cocaine smuggler that is not very nice. Do you know the damage that does?" he said.

The former Mirror editor said her book should act as a "force for a good message" without the "whining and profiteering" and advised her to give the money from the book sales to charity.

"You got the coverage you deserved," he added.

Ms McCollum, from Dungannon, was one half of what became known as the 'Peru Two' - two young women who were caught smuggling cocaine worth £1.5m from a Peru airport in 2013.

She and Scottish accomplice Melissa Reid served time in jail in Lima following their conviction for attempting to smuggle 11kg of cocaine to Spain.

Ms McCollum was released in 2016.

She said she was offered £5,000 to transport the drugs after she was approached at a party.

"I didn't think much about.. I was 20 so I did know a bit," she said.

"I just wasn't thinking... I look back now and think 'how could I not have realised what I was doing?'.

"I didn't know I was going to Peru, I didn't know how much drugs it was... I wasn't really told much about anything."