Briton gets 3-year jail term in Egypt for smuggling classified painkillers

Prison visit The family of a British woman facing the death penalty in Egypt on drug smuggling charges today paid her an emotional visit in prison

THESE are the squalid conditions British tourist Laura Plummer could face after she was jailed for three years for smuggling painkillers into Egypt.

The woman, 33-year-old Laura Plummer from Hull, has maintained her innocence since her arrest in October on arrival from Britain at Hurghada, a Red Sea resort city.

The case revolves around 290 Tramadol she took with her to Egypt for her lover Omar Caboo, 33, who suffers from back pain, but neither he nor Miss Plummer's family accompanied her in court.

Ms Plummer's family told The Times that she was prevented from bringing her trusted translator into the hearing.

Plummer's trial started in the town of Safaga on Monday with what her lawyers described as a mistaken confession. "When she brought the tramadol, she believed it was a painkiller".

Ms Synclair said: "She's absolutely terrified, she's petrified. she looks shocking, she looks shock white, her hair has fallen out, her teeth are all discoloured, she's got a rash all over her face, she couldn't even stand up in court".

He said: "Unfortunately ministers can only do so much, the judiciary in Egypt is independent and impartial and the judge will come to a view without any outside influence", adding that the evidence she didn't know the drug was banned was "pretty clear". "I'm even more anxious now she's in actual prison with real criminals".

Plummer met her partner Aziz, also known as Caboo, three years ago in Sharm El Sheikh where he was working as a lifeguard. "We're just hoping. Even half of that (three years' imprisonment) would be better".

Drug smuggling convictions sometimes carry the death penalty; others carry a minimum of 10 years in prison.

She says she has no idea what she doing was illegal and was just "daft" after being given the Class C painkillers by a work friend.

Rachel said: "She's sleep deprived, she's visibly nervous and upset".

Her legal team are to put in a bail application that could see Laura freed from the detention centre where she has been since October 9.

There was no immediate from the British foreign office in London. "This is a damning indictment actually of the Egyptian authorities in the sense that good sense and fairness certainly hasn't prevailed in this case", he said.

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