May 26, 2018

Family of British woman jailed in Egypt fear for her mental health

28 December 2017, 12:41 | Marta Robbins

Family of British woman jailed in Egypt fear for her mental health

Why Britain needs to strengthen its ties with Egypt

Despite her family's best efforts, she has been sentenced to three years to be served at Qena prison just north of Luxor, which houses some of the most risky criminals in Egypt.

Plummer insisted that the tablets were for her Egyptian partner, who required the painkillers for his chronic back pain.

A spokesman from Britain's Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: "We will continue to provide assistance to Laura and her family following the court ruling in Egypt, and our embassy is in regular contact with the Egyptian authorities".

Discussing Plummer's relationship with her Egyptian husband, Omar Caboo, her sister said the couple had merely signed a document allowing them to sleep in an apartment together.

It is legal in the United Kingdom but a banned drug in Egypt and anyone caught with it can face criminal charges.

The Plummers' MP, Karl Turner, said Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and Foreign Office Minister Alistair Burt had raised her case with Egyptian authorities.

"She won't even make it through that - I can't believe they've even still sent her there". Her family told British newspapers she bought the tablets for her Egyptian partner living in the Red Sea resort of Hurghada.

Plummer shares a small cell with 24 other inmates, most of whom are associated with Jihadi terrorist organizations.

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But the family said Ms Synclair went to the cells only to find that Plummer had already been transferred to a prison in Qena.

Rachel said her mother, Roberta Sinclair, had travelled out to Egypt for the hearing and was "devastated" by the sentence.

She said the family was planning an immediate appeal.

But, she said, after two hours the judges came back with the judgement and "Laura collapsed crying, she got led away, she got taken away in this cage". "She had to get the court's interpreter who was interpreting the wrong answers", her sister Jayne Synclair said, speaking on BBC television.

The painkiller, which is a available with a prescription in the United Kingdom, is illegal in Eqpyt where it is used as a heroin substitute.

Her lawyer Mohammed Osman has launched an appeal but it will not be heard for at least 60 days.

"For someone to be found guilty of drug smuggling they have to be aware that they are possessing narcotics", Plummer's lawyer, Mohamed Othman, told Reuters.

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