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Dubai imprisons British trio for drugs

IMPRISONED: Jeerh, left, Cameron, centre, and Williams

THREE BRITISH men have been given prison terms after being found guilty of drugs offences in Dubai.

Karl Williams, 26, Suneet Jeerh, 25, and Grant Cameron, 25, all from London, will be deported – they each have been given four-year sentences.

All of them denied the charges of possessing, taking and intending to distribute illegal drugs.

They were arrested while on holiday in the Middle Eastern country last July.

Dubai authorities found a substance known as “spice” – synthetic cannabis – in the trio’s car, which resulted in their arrest.

Before the sentences were announced, there had been concern that Williams, Jeerh and Cameron had been tortured while in custody – British Prime Minister David Cameron also expressed his concern about the welfare of the three Londoners.

Claims that they were subject to police beatings and electroshock have been made by them, however, Dubai police deny such accusations.

Cameron, in a letter to legal rights charity Reprieve, wrote: “We continue to press for evidence for a full, impartial and independent investigation into the allegations.

“The absence of an independent medical examination remains a concern.”

Kate Higham, a legal investigator from Reprieve, said: “The boys all got four years for consumption.

“While we are pleased with this result we will continue to push for the men's release and return in light of the torture they have suffered”.

The plight of the men has wider diplomatic ramifications due to the UAE being an important geopolitical partner with the UK.

Williams and Cameron, both from Wanstead, northeast London, Jeerh, from Ilford, east London, are said to have been taken out into the desert by police and subjected to physical abuse and torture.

“Karl was laid out on the bed, his trousers were stripped down and electric shocks were administered to his testicles while he was blindfolded”, Grant Cameron's mother, Tracy, told the BBC.

The sentences came as a surprise to the families of the men, who expected longer ones. The families expressed their satisfaction that they were not charged with dealing drugs – a crime which carries a sentence of up to 15 years in prison.

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