A prison smuggler blamed probation for not telling the court she couldn't turn up - as she appeared before a circuit judge months after a warrant was issued for her arrest.

Patricia Flood, 55, had already pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to trying to take heroin, crack cocaine and cannabis into Bullingdon prison, near Bicester, on December 18, 2019.

In the past year, a number of warrants have been issued for her arrest as she failed to attend hearings at the crown court.

On Monday, Judge Ian Pringle QC heard Flood had been arrested last week and remanded by Southampton magistrates on Friday.

Representing herself from the dock at Oxford Crown Court, she claimed that in September she’d asked the probation service to let the court know she wouldn’t be able to attend a hearing after a 'death in the family'.

She said she ‘deeply regretted’ what had happened and had transported the drug for a former partner. “He was really cruel to me. I’m really sorry, I just want this case to be over.”

Judge Pringle remanded Flood, of Monks Way, Southampton, into custody to be sentenced on Monday, December 6.

Robert Lindsey appeared for the Crown Prosecution Service.

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