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British Woman in Egypt Sentenced for Smuggling Painkillers

Image: British Woman in Egypt Sentenced for Smuggling Painkillers
In Egypt, a British woman was sentenced Tuesday to three years in prison for smuggling in painkillers. (Brent Flint/Dreamstime)

Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 05:18 PM

A British woman held in Egypt for smuggling painkillers into the country was sentenced Tuesday to three yars in prison.

Laura Plummer, a 33-year-old shop worker from Hull, was arrested in October after around 300 Tramadol tablets were found in her suitcase. Her family told British newspapers she bought the tablets for her Egyptian partner living in the Red Sea resort of Hurghada.

Plummer attended a hearing in her case on Monday, before Tuesday's sentencing. The court also ruled that she must pay a fine of 100,000 Egyptian pounds ($5,600).

Tramadol is a legal prescription medicine in Britain, but it is banned in Egypt. Plummer was arrested on arrival from Britain in October, and her detention was extended twice prior to her court appearance.

Plummer's family said on Tuesday they were disgusted by the way the trial had been conducted.

"From day one, this has been a complete nightmare. Yesterday in the court she wasn't even allowed her own interpreter. She had to get the court's interpreter who was interpreting the wrong answers," her sister Jayne Synclair said, speaking on BBC television.

The family said Plummer had also been forced to sign Arabic-language documents which she did not understand.

"She's on the verge of a mental breakdown ... It's just horrendous," her sister said.

Her lawyer said Plummer would appeal, seeking to reverse the verdict or get a commuted sentence, which is possible in the two months after sentencing. He added that she did not know Tramadol was banned in Egypt.

Speaking to the court on behalf of Plummer, the lawyer, said she had no criminal intent in bringing in the painkillers.

On Monday the lawyer, Mohamed Othman, told Reuters: "It is illogical that she was dealing in Tramadol. She had only 320 pills. Even the plane ticket is almost double the price of those pills."

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." 

© 2018 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

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A British woman was sentenced in Egypt on Tuesday for smuggling painkillers into the country.
british, woman, egypt, sentenced, smuggling, painkillers
Tuesday, 26 Dec 2017 05:18 PM
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