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Brit teacher still in Kuwait jail despite being found innocent of drugs charge

Sara Assayed was wrongly convicted of drugs offences in 2019 after a 30 minute trial and sentenced to 10 years in a Kuwait jail.

But despite winning an appeal against her conviction the 35-year-old primary school teacher remains behind bars.

After Sara’s initial trial, her sister Sheree contacted the British embassy in Kuwait for help as the family couldn't travel due to Covid.

However as Sara had been charged the embassy refused to intervene. The family managed to hire another lawyer in Kuwait, who secured an appeal in February 2021.

By that point she had been in jail for three months.

"In one hour the lawyer was able to provide enough evidence that my sister was framed and there were no drugs involved,” Sheree told Wales Online.

Inconsistencies between police reports, as well as various drug tests and telephone records were used to prove Sara had never been involved with drugs. Sara's guilty verdict was overturned on February 15 but she was informed that she had to be deported regardless.

"We're fine with her coming home," Sheree explained. "We don't want her working there after what has happened to her."

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However, when Sara was sent to the deportation centre the British Embassy had no paperwork about the deportation and after two days she was sent back to prison to await deportation.

Sara was placed in isolation due to Covid, where she was kept with no pillows or blankets for fourteen days.

The family once again contacted the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office [FCDO] and British Embassy to arrange her travel home and covid tests.

Sara's dad Ziad, who is an engineer, flew to Kuwait hoping to secure a meeting with the ambassador – but the family say he was turned down by the diplomatic chief's staff.

"We had totally no support from the British Embassy," Sheree added. "The FCDO know her situation and they keep referring us to the British Embassy in Kuwait, the British Embassy in Kuwait keep referring us to the FCDO in London."

Sheree said the family is becoming more and more concerned as time goes on.

She said: "She told me if she doesn't get out she's going to commit suicide, her mental health is in a state."

A Foreign Office spokesman said: "We are assisting a British national who is detained in Kuwait and are in touch with their family and the local authorities."

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