Tourist Held On Drug Trafficking Charges, Facing Death Penalty For Bringing Pain Pills To Egypt

Laura Plummer, 33, a British tourist, was arrested with the tramadol tablets in her suitcase after she flew into a Red Sea beach resort for a two-week break with her Egyptian husband. She is facing execution for taking prescription painkillers into Egypt. She was crammed into a tiny cell with 25 other women and a hole in the floor for a toilet.

She is being held on drug trafficking charges at Hurghada 1st Police Department with “murderers, heroin addicts, and prostitutes,” her family said.

Plummer’s sister Jayne Synclair, 40, said her fear is her sister will try to end her life after 26 days locked in “repulsive” conditions.

She said: “Her life’s in danger. She can’t stay in there any longer or she will be murdered or kill herself.”

“We went out to see her last week and my mom collapsed at the sight of her. She looked over at us and said, ‘Mom, Mom, please help me, help me.’”

Plummer’s mom, Roberta Synclair, 63, sobbed: “She had no idea she was doing anything wrong. The painkillers were placed at the top of her suitcase, she wasn’t hiding them.”

“We’ve been told she’s facing either 25 years in prison or the death penalty. We’re beside ourselves worrying that they’ll make an example of her.”

She was detained for five hours at the airport without an interpreter before signing a 38-page statement in Arabic which she thought would let her leave.

Instead, she has been held in a 15-foot-by-15-foot cell with 25 other women for nearly a month.

tourist death penalty for drug trafficking

In her last text home, Laura begged her dad, Neville: “I’m in trouble and I need your help.”

Neville, 70, has since spent over $13,000 on legal bills. Laura had flown to Hurghada airport for a stay with husband Omar, 33. They met four years ago and she jets out to see him four times a year.

Her husband suffers back pain after an accident, so she took 29 strips of tramadol, each containing 10 tablets, plus some Naproxen. In Britain, tramadol is by prescription only, but it is banned in Turkey, where addicts use it as a heroin substitute.

Sinclair and daughters Rachel, 31, and Jayne say Plummer’s been in court twice, each time being returned to cells for 15 days.

Plummer’s sister said: “She is still wearing the same clothes she flew out in. When she came into court that first time, she looked dead behind the eyes and was handcuffed to a 6-foot-4-inch policeman holding a machine gun.”

“She kept saying, ‘Please help me, please help me.’ She looked like a little child again.”

The Foreign Office confirmed: “We are supporting a British woman and her family following her detention in Egypt.”

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