British tourist 'faces death penalty in Egypt' for carrying painkillers

Laura Plummer remains in custody and her family says they were told she could face execution

Saturday 04 November 2017 09:39
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British tourist 'could faces death penalty in Egypt' for carrying painkillers

A British woman has been detained in Egypt after flying into the country with painkillers for her husband’s sore back.

Laura Plummer, 33, from Hull, was arrested when she was found to be carrying tramadol and naproxen in her suitcase.

The Sun said she signed a 38-page statement in Arabic, which she thought would result in her being able to leave the airport, but she has been held in a 15ft by 15ft cell with 25 other women for nearly a month.

Her brother, James Plummer, 31, said the family has been told she could face up to 25 years in jail, with one lawyer even mentioning the death penalty, the newspaper reported.

Mr Plummer said his sister had been arrested for what he thinks the authorities in Egypt call “drug trafficking”, but said she had only brought a small amount of medication for her Egyptian husband, who she visits two to four times a year.

The Sun said she took 29 strips of tramadol, each containing 10 tablets, plus some naproxen, adding that her husband suffers back pain due to an accident.

Mr Plummer said: “It’s just blown out of proportion completely.”

He said his sister just thought she was doing a “good deed” by bringing the medication over to her husband, and said she will be “completely out of her comfort zone” in jail.

“She’s so by the book, so routine, she just likes her own home comforts, watches Emmerdale every night or things like that, going to bed at nine o’clock every night,” he said.

Mr Plummer said his mother and sisters have travelled to Egypt to visit Laura following her arrest on 9 October, adding: “They say she’s unrecognisable. When they seen her, she’s like a zombie, they said.”

He said her hair is starting to fall out due to stress and he voiced concerns about how she will cope.

“I don’t think she’s tough enough to survive it,” he said, adding: “She has a phobia of using anybody else’s toilet, so let alone sharing a toilet and a floor with everybody else. That will be awful for her, it’ll be traumatising.”

Mr Plummer said the family feel “helpless” due to being in a different country, and said of his sister: “It’s awful for Laura ... she’s not a tough person at all. She’s only small.”

A Foreign Office spokesperson said: “We are supporting a British woman and her family following her detention in Egypt.”

PA

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