Hope for British mother in Dubai jail

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The Independent Online

A British mother who was jailed for committing adultery in Dubai is to have her custody case reviewed, the emirate's authorities have promised.

Marnie Pearce, 40, lost access to her two sons after a court in Dubai found she had cheated on her Egyptian ex-husband and sentenced her to three months in prison.

Her supporters received an assurance yesterday that the Dubai authorities were reviewing their position about Ms Pearce's custody case and a deportation order against her. Her former husband, Ihab El Labban, was granted custody of the couple's two boys, Laith, eight, and Ziad, four, last month.

Ms Pearce, originally from Bracknell, Berkshire, is due to be released from prison in the first week of May and is expected to be flown back to Britain immediately.

She protests her innocence and is fighting the deportation order because she believes staying in Dubai would give her the best chance of regaining custody of her sons.

Her supporters said in a statement: "We have had a promise from the Dubai authorities that they are in the process of reviewing their position in regards to Marnie's deportation and custody case." They added that they would continue to fight to help Ms Pearce "get justice and gain access to her beloved sons once more".

Ms Pearce met her ex-husband in Oman and the couple married in the Seychelles in September 1999.

In March last year, she was arrested and accused of committing adultery with a British man who she insists was only a friend. She was found guilty by a Dubai court in November and lost two appeals.

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