Friday 15 February 2019

'I thought this nightmare would never end' - British tourist jailed in Egypt over painkillers returns home

Laura Plummer at Heathrow Airport following her return to the UK Photo credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
Laura Plummer at Heathrow Airport following her return to the UK Photo credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
Laura Plummer (centre) is embraced by her sisters Lynda (left) and Rachel at Heathrow airport following her return to the UK Photo credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
Laura Plummer Photo: Family handout/PA Wire

Jasmine Cameron-Chileshe

A British woman jailed for travelling with painkillers in Egypt has said her two-week holiday in the sun turned into a "15-month trip to Hell" as she landed back in the UK.

Laura Plummer, 34, arrived at Heathrow Airport this afternoon and said she thought her "nightmare would never end" when she was held in al-Qanater women's prison, south of Cairo.

The shopworker from Hull was sentenced to three years in prison on December 26 2017 for taking 290 Tramadol tablets into the country.

Breaking down in tears as she arrived back in the UK, Ms Plummer said: "Words cannot express how delighted I am to be home.

"At times I thought this nightmare would never end. What should have been a two-week holiday in the sun turned into a 15-month trip to Hell.

"I would like to thank everybody for supporting me throughout this, especially my family."

Laura Plummer
Photo: Family handout/PA Wire
Laura Plummer Photo: Family handout/PA Wire

Ms Plummer was arrested at Hurghada Airport on October 9 2017 when she flew into the Red Sea resort.

She claimed she was taking the tablets - which are legal in the UK but banned in Egypt - for her Egyptian partner Omar Caboo, who suffers severe back pain.

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

Last September, she was refused permission to appeal against her conviction, but was granted early release on Monday after serving a third of her sentence.

Karl Turner, Ms Plummer's local MP, said: "I am delighted for Laura and her family that this terrible ordeal is now coming to an end.

"I would like to thank the Foreign Office and particularly minister of state Alistair Burt MP for everything he and officials have done for Laura and her family since this saga begun.

Laura Plummer (centre) is embraced by her sisters Lynda (left) and Rachel at Heathrow airport following her return to the UK
Photo credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
Laura Plummer (centre) is embraced by her sisters Lynda (left) and Rachel at Heathrow airport following her return to the UK Photo credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

"I very much hope that Laura can put this behind her and get on with her life now."

A spokesman for the Foreign Office said: "We are pleased Laura is now able to reunite with her family.

"Our staff provided extensive support to Laura and her family during her imprisonment, visiting her regularly to check her welfare, and maintaining close contact with both her family and lawyer."

Press Association

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