'Peru Two' drugs mule Melissa Reid is barely recognisable

EXCLUSIVE ‘Peru Two’ drugs mule Melissa Reid is barely recognisable as she is spotted walking her dog near her home before accomplice Michaella McCollum’s BBC documentary airs on Sunday night

  • Michaella, 28, and Melissa were arrested in 2013 in Jorge Chávez airport
  • Caught trying to smuggle £1.5million-worth of cocaine out of Lima 
  • Both falsely claimed armed gangsters had forced them to carry the cocaine  
  • Since the pair’s release in 2016, Melissa has lead a quiet life back in the UK
  • She is single again after splitting from the backpacker boyfriend Gary Stafford

‘Peru Two’ drugs mule Melissa Reid is barely recognisable as she is spotted walking her dog near her home – one day before her accomplice Michaella McCollum’s BBC documentary airs.

Michaella, 28, and Melissa were arrested in 2013 for attempting to smuggle £1.5 million worth of cocaine out of Jorge Chávez International Airport in Lima, Peru.

Both claimed armed gangsters had forced them to carry the cocaine – when in fact they had willingly smuggled the drugs for a £5,000 payment.

Since the pair’s release in 2016, Melissa has lead a quiet life – in contrast to her partner-in-crime Michaella whose documentary High: Confessions Of An Ibiza Drug Mule will be released on Sunday.

MailOnline can reveal that Melissa, 27, is single again after splitting from the backpacker boyfriend Gary Stafford who visited her in jail.

She was photographed walking her dog after enjoying a picnic during a heatwave in Scotland this week.

‘Peru Two’ drugs mule Melissa Reid is barely recognisable as she is spotted walking her dog near her home (pictured) – one day before her accomplice Michaella McCollum’s BBC documentary airs


Michaella, 28, and Melissa (pictured) were arrested in 2013 for attempting to smuggle £1.5 million worth of cocaine out of Jorge Chávez International Airport in Lima, Peru

Since the pair’s release in 2016, Melissa (left) has lead a quiet life – in contrast to her partner-in-crime Michaella whose documentary High: Confessions Of An Ibiza Drug Mule will be released on Sunday

After her return to Scotland, Melissa confessed she had been on a ‘downward spiral’ of ecstasy, cocaine and ketamine in Spain. 

A neighbour at her new home in Kirkintilloch, near Glasgow – where she moved following her split with her boyfriend – told MailOnline she had no idea of the ex-con’s past. 

The woman – who asked not to be named – said: ‘We know her as Mel but didn’t know she had a history like that.

‘To be honest, she is totally down-to-earth and is a sweet girl.

Both women (Michaella, left, and Melissa, right, pictured after their arrest) claimed armed gangsters had forced them to carry the cocaine – when in fact they had willingly smuggled the drugs for a £5,000 payment

Michaella (pictured) published her memoirs, You’ll Never See Daylight Again, two years ago and has embarked on a publicity tour – which included being grilled by Piers Morgan on Good Morning Britain


MailOnline can reveal that Melissa, 27, (pictured) is trying to rebuild her life – single again after splitting from the backpacker boyfriend Gary Stafford who visited her in jail

‘You would never imagine, honestly, but now that you mention it she does seem a bit too quiet.

‘I heard she worked for a charity and I see her from time to time out walking the dog, but we don’t know her.

‘This is a quiet neighbourhood and she’s a quiet girl, no noise or anything.

‘She doesn’t tend to have visitors or at least I don’t think so.

‘Maybe she visits her family. She seems to enjoy her own company and is never any bother.’

Meanwhile, Michaella published her memoirs, You’ll Never See Daylight Again, two years ago and has embarked on a publicity tour – which included being grilled by Piers Morgan on Good Morning Britain.

She was photographed walking her dog after enjoying a picnic during a heatwave in Scotland this week (pictured) 

After her return to Scotland, Melissa (pictured) confessed she had been on a ‘downward spiral’ of ecstasy, cocaine and ketamine in Spain

And last week saw the re-release of her book under the same title as the television documentary, High, in a bid to rake in more cash.

It contains lurid details of her time behind bars including watching lesbian sex sessions and being propositioned by prison guards and tells in the documentary of the hellish conditions of her incarceration.

The BBC’s five-part series will see Michaella, from Northern Ireland, tell her story of her time in prison and how she was able to get an early release. 

She regularly shares glamorous photos of herself with her near-40,000 followers on Instagram, posing with flash cars and on holidays abroad.

In one snap she posed in a skimpy bikini in front of the famous Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

The pair hit the headlines when they were caught at Jorge Chevez International Airport in Peru on August 6, 2013, with 11kg of cocaine in their luggage.

A neighbour at her new home in Kirkintilloch, near Glasgow – where she moved following her split with her boyfriend – told MailOnline she had no idea of the ex-con’s (pictured) past

After her release from prison and deportation back to the UK, Melissa (pictured)landed a job with the Citizen’s Advice Bureau charity and keeps to herself according to locals

In December 2014 they were sentenced to six years and eight months in Ancon 2 prison, an hour’s journey north of the capital, Lima, but both were released early and deported from Peru in 2016.

Since then Michaella has tried to reinvent herself as a model, author and celebrity – she even has a management company for ‘business enquiries’.

But Melissa continues to shy away from her past and is perhaps trying to live up to her family’s aspirations for her to assimilate back into her local community.

After her release from prison and deportation back to the UK, Melissa landed a job with the Citizen’s Advice Bureau charity and keeps to herself according to locals.

She lived in Kilmarnock for a spell with backpacker Mr Stafford who had trekked to visit her in jail in Peru but the couple are no longer together.

A neighbour of Mr Stafford’s said: ‘Melissa moved out of their home a year ago. She no longer lives there and we don’t see her anymore.’ 

Melissa (pictured) lived in Kilmarnock for a spell with backpacker Mr Stafford who had trekked to visit her in jail in Peru but the couple are no longer together

McCollum’s friends and family will also give personal accounts through interviews in the documentary tomorrow.

The synopsis says: ‘Told in her own words, McCollum recounts the extraordinary story of how she became infamous worldwide as one half of the Peru Two.

‘From how she was recruited as a cartel drugs mule and came to be arrested, tried and jailed in one of the most notorious maximum security prisons in Peru, to the even more extraordinary story of how she got herself out again.’

In the series, the trafficker, now mother to twin boys Rafael and Rio, will re-tell some of the stories from her wayward past that she shared in her book.

In her memoirs she told how she ended up agreeing to be a drug smuggler – and admitted one of her biggest regrets was sniffing lines of coke and ketamine off a McDonald’s table at breakfast the morning of her ill-fated trafficking trip.

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