The Egyptian 'husband' of a British holidaymaker facing the death penalty for carrying prescription painkillers worth £23 reportedly already has a wife, multiple girlfriends and his marriage to Laura Plummer 'means nothing'. 

Ms Plummer, 33, is languishing in a prison cell in Egypt after being caught with the painkiller Tramadol in her suitcase at Hurghada International Airport.

The shop assistant, from Hull, was visiting her 33-year-old partner Omar Caboo, a sports activity administrator at a 5-star hotel in Sharm El Sheikh who she met while on holiday in the country four years ago.

While it had been reported the pair were married, Ms Plummer's sister Jayne Synclair, 40, has now claimed the couple signed a 'document' which allows them to sleep in an apartment together when they are in Egypt.

Laura Plummer (centre), pictured with her sisters Rachel Plummer and Jayne Synclair, is facing the death penalty in Egypt for carrying painkillers into the country

Laura Plummer (centre), pictured with her sisters Rachel Plummer and Jayne Synclair, is facing the death penalty in Egypt for carrying painkillers into the country

Laura Plummer (centre), pictured with her sisters Rachel Plummer and Jayne Synclair, is facing the death penalty in Egypt for carrying painkillers into the country

Ms Plummer brought the drugs for 'husband' Omar, who suffers from back problems. Her sister today claims the pair's marriage 'means nothing' and Omar is already married

Ms Plummer brought the drugs for 'husband' Omar, who suffers from back problems. Her sister today claims the pair's marriage 'means nothing' and Omar is already married

Ms Plummer brought the drugs for 'husband' Omar, who suffers from back problems. Her sister today claims the pair's marriage 'means nothing' and Omar is already married

Laura Plummer, left, is being held by Egyptian authorities after taking tramadol into the country

Laura Plummer, left, is being held by Egyptian authorities after taking tramadol into the country

Laura Plummer, left, is being held by Egyptian authorities after taking tramadol into the country

Their 'marriage means nothing', is not legally binding and Omar already has a Muslim wife, she said.

She told the Mirror: 'Laura isn't a secret. She has met Omar's family and children. But he has a Muslim wife and they only signed documents in Egypt that allow them to live together when she goes to stay.

'He doesn't have a passport so can't come to England.

'I don't know much about him but he likes to take her out when she's there. Even though she's 33, she had never had a boyfriend before Omar.'

It comes as Ms Plummer was apparently fleeced out of £10,000 by men posing as lawyers who said they can help free her.

Two men reportedly turned up at her cell offering help in return for the money. But the fraudster allegedly demanded £10,000 up front before dropping her case.

Ms Plummer is being held in a 15ft by 15ft cell with between 20 and 30 other women including 'murderers, heroin addicts and prostitutes' and was being 'kicked and kicked' until the leader of the cell intervened, her sister revealed.

Ms Plummer brought the medicine into the country to give to Omar, who suffers from severe back and arm pain after being in a car crash a few years ago. 

Laura Plummer, right, was held for five hours at the airport with no interpreter and could now face the death penalty

Laura Plummer, right, was held for five hours at the airport with no interpreter and could now face the death penalty

Laura Plummer, right, was held for five hours at the airport with no interpreter and could now face the death penalty

Mrs Plummer, left, could face 25 years in prison with no parole, life imprisonment or even the death penalty

Mrs Plummer, left, could face 25 years in prison with no parole, life imprisonment or even the death penalty

Mrs Plummer, left, could face 25 years in prison with no parole, life imprisonment or even the death penalty

The painkiller tramadol can be bought with a prescription in Britain, but is illegal in Egypt where it is a popular heroin substitute 

The painkiller tramadol can be bought with a prescription in Britain, but is illegal in Egypt where it is a popular heroin substitute 

The painkiller tramadol can be bought with a prescription in Britain, but is illegal in Egypt where it is a popular heroin substitute 

But the drug, which is available in the UK on prescription, is banned in Egypt and sometimes used as a heroin substitute.

Ms Plummer has claimed she was forced to sign a 38-page Arabic confession before being locked in a tiny cell with dozens of other women.

Ms Synclair said her sister is 'naive and child-like' and 'didn't even check what the drugs were'. 

Ms Plummer was arrested after flying in to a Red Sea beach resort for a break with Omar on October 9.

She claims she was recommended the pills – of which she was carrying 29 strips, each containing ten tablets which has a 'street value' of £23.20 – by a colleague when discussing Omar's consistent pain. 

Mrs Plummer was held for five hours at the airport with no interpreter.

She then signed a statement she believed would allow her to leave. 

Drugs and the death penalty in Egypt 

In Egypt capital punishment is carried out by hanging. The state carried out at least 44 executions last year.

Possession, use and trafficking illegal drugs can be punished with death.

Carrying small amounts can result in lengthy prison sentences of 25 years.

It is common for people convicted to life imprisonment in drugs cases to face life imprisonment with no chance of parole or pardon. 

In 2015 Cairo Scene reported that tramadol was the 'most abused drug in Egypt'. An anti-addiction hotline found that 40.7 per cent of drug users take the painkiller.    

Ms Plummer is said to still be wearing the same clothes she flew out in and was handcuffed to a gun-wielding policeman when she first appeared in court. She is due to appear in the dock again on Thursday.

Her mother claimed she looked 'dead behind the eyes' and repeatedly begged for help as she faced judges.

Ms Plummer's youngest sister, Rachel, 31, said: 'Laura can't cope another hour – let alone 20-plus years.

'She's in there with 25 non-speaking English women so you can imagine the loneliness yet being surrounded by so many people in a small space.

'There are Egyptian women who are in there for what us British call proper drug related crimes like heroin and cocaine but they come and go yet she's taken some painkillers across and is getting treated like it's a million pound drug smuggle.' 

She was stopped at the airport as she jetted in for a fortnight stay with Omar – who she sees four times per year. 

The last text message sent by the shop keeper was to her father, Neville, and said: 'I'm in trouble and I need your help.' 

Ms Plummer's brother, James,  told BBC Radio 5 live his sister had brought the tablets into the country in an 'innocent, honest mistake'.

He said shop assistant Ms Plummer had told a colleague about Omar's back trouble and they told her she could get her painkillers from her GP. 

He added: 'They were prescribed to a friend of hers.'

Mr Plummer said his sister did not even check what kind of tablets they were. 

Tramadol is prescription-only in the UK and a pill is worth 8pm, which means Mrs Plummer could have only made a maximum of £23.20 if she had intended to sell them. 

Ms Plummer is due to make a third appearance in court on November 9 with a third lawyer. 

The Foreign Office confirmed they are assisting a British national in Egypt. 

For confidential support call the Samaritans on 116123 or visit a local Samaritans branch, or see samaritans.org for details.  

    LEAVE A REPLY

    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here