United Kingdom woman jailed in Egypt over painkillers

Neville and Laura Plummer

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

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

Jayne, of Hull, East Yorks., said: "Laura has got three years, but we have got a life sentence with this - our family will never be able to shake this off".

"It will take a while and she has to go back to the prison", said Plummer's mother, Roberta Synclair.

The sentencing followed farcical scenes in court on Christmas Day when an interpreter wrongly entered a guilty plea on Laura's behalf before the case was finally adjourned.

She added: "There was nothing on the travel guide website when visiting Egypt that says you can not take Tramadol into the country". "She's frightened to death of everything", Synclair said.

Laura Plummer, 33, was arrested in October after she was found carrying in her suitcase Tramadol tablets, which is listed as an illegal drug in Egypt for its wide use as a heroin substitute.

Tramadol is a legal, prescription medicine in Britain, but it is banned in Egypt.

Neville Plummer and Laura Plummer
BPM MEDIA FAMILY Her dad claims his daughter is in extreme danger

Rachel said she was unsure of a potential appeal. "Laura did not know what she was carrying was a narcotic".

"Obviously that's even more devastating for my mum because she's not got to say goodbye to Laura", Rachel Plummer said.

Laura, from Hull, was held on October 9 as she flew into Red Sea resort Hurghada for a trip to see Omar.

Her lawyer told Sky News that the idea she was a drug trafficker was illogical as she made no attempt to hide what she was transporting.

She attended her hearing on Monday before she was sentenced on Tuesday. "Even the plane ticket is nearly double the price of those pills".

He told BBC Radio 4′s The World At One: "I am hopeful that good sense will eventually prevail".

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

"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".

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