Page last updated at 20:46 GMT, Thursday, 10 December 2009

Parents' plea to Miliband over jailed backpacker

Patrick Malluzzo
Patrick Malluzzo's family say he is in poor health

The parents of a man in prison in India for drug-smuggling have taken their appeal for help to the Foreign Office.

Former City worker Patrick Malluzzo, of Dartford, Kent, was given a 10-year jail term in 2004. His appeal has been adjourned 12 times in three months.

Cannabis was found in a bag he had lent to a friend while travelling, but he has always maintained his innocence.

His parents met with Foreign Office officials to appeal for help from Foreign Secretary David Miliband.

Teresa Malluzzo, Mr Malluzzo's mother, said: "I want to be able to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and Christmas with all my family.

"I want us to be reunited."

'Travesty of justice'

Fair Trials International said Mr Malluzzo was wrongly convicted and refused an interpreter during the trial in Rajasthan.

Its chief executive, Jago Russell, said: "Patrick's conviction was a travesty of justice and although he has a right to an appeal under both Indian and international law he has waited years to clear his name.

"We are urging the Foreign Secretary to help us persuade India finally to hear Patrick's case."

Mr Malluzzo's parents have re-mortgaged the family home to help pay their legal bills.

The Foreign Office told BBC London that consulate officials visited Mr Malluzzo on 19 November and a hearing was expected to take place on Tuesday.

Ann Widdecombe MP, a former shadow home secretary, wrote to the Chief Justice of Rajasthan earlier this year asking for Mr Malluzzo's appeal to be made "an absolute priority".

'Sleep deprivation'

Mr Malluzzo was backpacking in India in 2004 when a friend took his bag from Rajasthan to Goa so he could travel light.

The friend accidentally left three bags, including Mr Malluzzo's luggage, on a train. They were found to contain about 42 lbs (19kg) of cannabis resin.

Mr Malluzzo claims the first he knew about it was when he was arrested at Mumbai airport as he tried to leave India.

He has maintained his innocence but claims he confessed after police burned him with cigarettes, beat him and subjected him to sleep deprivation.

The prosecution at the trial, which was conducted only in Hindi, decided not to use the confessions.

Advertisement

Jailed man's family appeal to Foreign Office



Print Sponsor


SEE ALSO
Jailed backpacker 'needs UK help'
04 Dec 09 |  Kent
Appeal hope for jailed backpacker
05 Oct 09 |  England
'Tortured' Briton's appeal hope
21 Aug 09 |  London
MP seeks help for drugs jail man
08 Oct 08 |  Kent
Father seeks to clear son's name
14 May 07 |  Kent

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

BBC iD

Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2018 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific