Suffolk couple jailed as spies in Greece

SIX British plane-spotters arrested near a Greek air force base last year were today sentenced to three years in jail after they were found guilty of spying charges by a court in the southern town of Kalamata.

SIX British plane-spotters arrested near a Greek air force base last year were today sentenced to three years in jail after they were found guilty of spying charges by a court in the southern town of Kalamata.

Two Dutchmen received the same sentences.

Six more Britons received one-year sentences after being found guilty of aiding and abetting them.

After the judges delivered the verdicts, it was unclear whether the sentences might be suspended.

Lesley Coppin from Mildenhall in Suffolk, who was jailed for a year, said: "I cannot believe they have done it, but I really should know better. This is all about politics. They made a mistake and they won't back down."

Paul Coppin, who received a three-year term, said: "I'm disgusted with the whole legal system. It's a shambles."

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The group seemed unable to take in the severity of the sentences and showed little emotion as a media circus broke out.

During this morning's break in proceedings, lawyers told the group members that they now faced another legal bill of £4,000 each for the trial.

The defendants immediately began to protest that they could not afford such an amount and said they were considering applying to take legal action against their own lawyers once the case was

completed.

They have already had to pay £9,000 each in bail money, which they have been told may take up to six months to be returned, £3,000 each in legal fees from their court appearances in November and December, £1,000 between them in court administration fees.

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