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Family of Briton jailed for smuggling drugs angered as Egypt withdraws pardon

Published: Updated:

The family of British tourist Laura Plummer, who was sentenced to jail in Egypt for smuggling drugs into the country, have expressed their anger after an alleged pardon granted for their daughter was reportedly withdrawn by Egyptian president.

The 33-year-old was jailed for three years in December after being caught bringing illegal painkillers into the country.

Plummer’s family arrived in Egypt Friday evening in hopes that their daughter will be freed after being told that her name appeared on a presidential pardon list due to be signed by President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi.

There have been unconfirmed reports from British media outlets that Plummer is going to be released on Saturday by a presidential pardon on January 25, a national public holiday when the country’s president can usually issue pardons to prisoners.

But the family revealed their anger after being informed that the pardon had been withdrawn, according to British newspapers.

The family said the British Embassy in Cairo has allegedly informed the mother Roberta, 63, there had been a “mistake”.

She now faces a further six months before an appeal can be heard, her sister Rachel said, adding that the family would "not give up.”

“I had no info to update and only found out today my sister was not getting pardoned. We will now look to getting the appeal in process,” she said in a Facebook post, according to the Daily Mail.

“We will get knocked down over and over but we will keep getting up and do everything we can until we bring her home.”

Plummer was visiting her Egyptian partner in October, who is allegedly suffering from back pain following an accident. She brought along almost 300 tablets of Tramadol as well as Naproxen, which she says were intended for her husband.

Tramadol is illegal in Egypt as it is sometimes used as a heroin substitute, a fact Plummer says she was not aware of.

“It is illogical that she was dealing in Tramadol. She had only 320 pills. Even the plane ticket is almost double the price of those pills,” Plummer’s lawyer, Mohamed Othman, told Reuters on court day in December.