British woman gets three years prison time for smuggling painkillers into Egypt

British woman gets three years prison time for smuggling painkillers into Egypt

An Egyptian court sentenced a British woman to three years in prison on Tuesday for smuggling about 300 painkiller tablets into the country, in a ruling her defence team said she would appeal to have overturned or commuted.

Ms Plummer has been held in the Red Sea resort of Hurghada, where she was arrested at the airport on October 9.

She claims she was carrying the tablets for her Egyptian partner Omar Caboo, who suffers from severe back pain.

The family's lawyers are planning to launch an appeal. She brought [the drugs] to help someone, to help a family.

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".

"She's the kindest person. She had to get the court's interpreter who was interpreting the wrong answers", her sister, Jayne Synclair, said, speaking on BBC television. I was anxious about her before, [when she was] in the police station. "I'm even more anxious now she's in actual prison with real criminals".

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The 33-year-old, from Hull, had her trial adjourned yesterday as she wept in the dock after accidentally pleading guilty due to a mix-up with her interpreter.

The family has previously said Plummer had no idea that what she was doing was illegal and she was just "daft".

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".

He told Sky News: "For someone to be found guilty of drugs smuggling they have to be aware that they are possessing narcotics".

They also argued that Laura made no attempt to hide the drugs, and signed a confession in Arabic - a language she doesn't speak.

The young shop assistant might consider herself lucky - earlier she'd been told that she might be facing 25 years in jail or even the death penalty.

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