Laura Plummer jailed in Egypt for carrying painkillers loses appeal

A British woman jailed in Egypt for taking hundreds of painkillers into the country has lost an appeal against her conviction, it has been reported.

Laura Plummer, 34, was sentenced to three years in prison on Boxing Day last year after she was found to be carrying 290 Tramadol tablets in her suitcase.

The shop worker, who appeared at the court hearing wearing an all-white jihab, had hoped Egypt’s appeal court would accept she had no way of knowing the pills were illegal in the country. 

But judges in Cairo upheld her conviction and jail term, despite evidence from the UK Foreign Office backing her version of events.

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Laura Plummer was sentenced to three years in prison

Laura Plummer was sentenced to three years in prison

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 from severe back pain, and had no idea what she was doing was wrong

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 from severe back pain, and had no idea what she was doing was wrong

Laura Plummer (pictured left) was sentenced to three years in prison after bringing painkillers into Egypt, which she claimed were to treat the back pain of her husband  Omar Caboo (right)

Ms Plummer was seen sitting in the front row of a church during Easter mass inside Cairo's Al Qanater prison in April

Ms Plummer was seen sitting in the front row of a church during Easter mass inside Cairo's Al Qanater prison in April

Ms Plummer was seen sitting in the front row of a church during Easter mass inside Cairo’s Al Qanater prison in April

Ms Plummer, from Hull, told The Sun: ‘I thought the appeal judges would see sense and realise I couldn’t have known the tablets were banned. It’s just so absurd.

‘I hate it. I hate it so much. I just want to come home. What don’t these people get? I wonder if I’ve died and this is hell.

‘What did I do that was so wrong in my life to end up here?’

The Briton was arrested at the airport on October 9 last year when she flew into the Red Sea resort of Hurghada.

The prison was in a bad state of disrepair and the cells only have a small window giving contact with the outside world

The prison was in a bad state of disrepair and the cells only have a small window giving contact with the outside world

In February, an Egyptian official claimed she wasn't in a hell-hole prison, and was receiving excellent care

In February, an Egyptian official claimed she wasn't in a hell-hole prison, and was receiving excellent care

The prison where Ms Plummer is kept was in a bad state of disrepair and the cells only have a small window giving contact with the outside world

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 from severe back pain, and had no idea what she was doing was wrong. 

The Foreign Office and Ms Plummer’s tour operator provided evidence in court showing she was unaware the drugs were illegal in Egypt.

Among the arguments submitted were that Egypt’s website listing banned items had not been updated.

But the appeal court ruled ignorance of the law was not a defence and said the original court’s decision was correct.

Ms Plummer’s mother Roberta Synclair said: ‘We’re disappointed, but not surprised. Each time we come to Egypt we prepare for the worst.’

How did Laura Plummer end up in an Egyptian jail?

October 9, 2017: Laura Plummer is arrested at Egyptian airport after she is found in possession of 290 banned painkillers

October 10: She sends desperate text to her father saying ‘Dad, please answer your phone, I am in trouble’

November 4: Her family visit her from the UK for the first time in an Egyptian holding cell

November 21: Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson attempts to intervene in the case but Ms Plummer’s lawyer says it is pointless

December 26: Ms Plummer is jailed for three years following a trial in an Egyptian courthouse

January 9, 2018: She is moved to a crowded Cairo prison, where conditions are said to be ‘horrendous’

January 10: Humberside Police back in England reveal a review into how Ms Plummer obtained the painkillers

January 26: Foreign Office sources reveal plans to give Ms Plummer a presidential pardon

January 29: The pardon is inexplicably withdrawn, with the Foreign Office claiming ‘a mistake’ was made

Ms Sinclair said the family have had no contact with Laura but have had an update from Omar which gave them small comfort. Pictured: Laura (right) with her two sisters

Ms Sinclair said the family have had no contact with Laura but have had an update from Omar which gave them small comfort. Pictured: Laura (right) with her two sisters

Ms Sinclair said the family have had no contact with Laura but have had an update from Omar which gave them small comfort. Pictured: Laura (right) with her two sisters

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