Egyptian court convicts British woman of Tramadol smuggling

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Shop worker Laura Plummer, 33, was arrested after she was found to be carrying 290 tramadol tablets in her suitcase, a painkiller which is legal in the United Kingdom but which is banned in Egypt.

Tramadol is a Class C prescription drug in the United Kingdom but is banned in Egypt as it is widely used as a heroin substitute.

The 33-year-old claimed she didn't know they were illegal and had taken them for her Egyptian lover Omar Caboo's bad back.

They said she did not try to hide the medicine, which she had been given by a friend, and she thought it was a joke when she was pulled over by officials after arriving for a holiday with her partner.

Osman argued that this mistranslation made it look as though Plummer had pleaded guilty to drug trafficking, "but she didn't", he said. The young shop assistant might consider herself lucky - earlier she'd been told that she might be facing 25 years in jail or even the death penalty. Both Laura's family and lawyers have argued that the pills were intended for Caboo - who provided the court with medical papers showing his back pain -and that Laura neither had any idea they were illegal nor plans to sell them. Anything less than three years. "She doesn't deserve that". Plummer's mother, Roberta Sinclair and Plummer's partner Omar were reportedly present outside the courthouse.

Her father, Nevile Plummer, said his daughter's hair had started falling out due to stress.

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Her other sister Jayne Synclair said Plummer had only been trying to help her partner.

"I am hopeful that good sense will eventually prevail", he told BBC Radio 4's The World At One.

The drug was officially deemed as the most used in Egypt in 2015, when the country's Anti Addiction Fund said 40.7% of the population were using it.

"I think it's a damning indictment about good sense and fair play".

The painkiller is legal in the United Kingdom but banned in Egypt.

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesman 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".

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