Seychelles does not tolerate illegal drugs, gov’t says after citizen sentenced in Dubai
Heroin found in a parcel coming in Seychelles through the post office. (Anti-Narcotics Bureau)
(Seychelles News Agency) - The government of Seychelles does not tolerate illegal activities that Seychellois may be involved in when travelling overseas, the Department of Foreign Affairs said on Thursday.
The statement came after a 39-year-old visitor from Seychelles was sentenced to 10 years in prison in Dubai earlier this week for mixing heroin with detergent powder in an attempt to send it to a friend back in the island nation.
According to the Gulf News on Tuesday, “The Dubai Court of First Instance convicted the 39-year-old defendant of possessing 990 grams of heroin for export purposes. According to the primary ruling, the court also fined the defendant Dh50,000 ($13,615).”
The news service added that “the 39-year-old pleaded not guilty and denied his accusation when he defended himself in court.”
The Department of Foreign Affairs reminded Seychellois citizen to respect the law of the land wherever they may be and said that illegal activities “only serve to tarnish the good image of our country and law abiding citizens in Seychelles living and/or travelling overseas.”
The Department made it clear that “it will only provide consular assistance in accordance with its means, to ensure that Seychellois are properly and fairly represented in overseas jurisdiction.”
Seychelles, a group of 115 islands in the western Indian Ocean, has a 'zero tolerance' policy for possession and use of illegal drugs.
“Anyone caught overseas in possession of such illegal drugs will have to tend to the consequences and abide by the law of that country,” said the Foreign Affairs department.
There are currently, three Seychellois citizens serving life-imprisonment in Egypt after being found guilty of drug trafficking. The three men were sentenced to death by execution on April 7, 2013 but following intense diplomatic negotiations at the highest levels, their sentences were commuted to life imprisonment.