British-Pakistani woman given life sentence for drug-smuggling

Khadija Shah was arrested at Islamabad airport in May 2012 when the drugs were found in her luggage.

Afp March 18, 2014
Khadija Shah (R) walks past a Pakistani policeman after a court hearing in Rawalpindi on March 18. PHOTO: AFP

ISLAMABAD: A court in Pakistan on Tuesday jailed a British mother-of-three for life for attempting to smuggle 63 kilograms of heroin out of the country.

Khadija Shah, who is from the central city of Birmingham and of Pakistani descent, was arrested at Islamabad airport in May 2012 when the drugs were found in her luggage.

She was convicted and sentenced at a special narcotics court in Rawalpindi, the twin city of Islamabad, according to legal papers seen by AFP. She was also fined Rs300,000.

Shah, 26, who was six months pregnant when she was arrested, denied the allegations. She gave birth to a daughter last September while in custody on the drugs charges.

Her lawyer Shehzad Akbar said she had no idea there were drugs in her luggage and they would appeal.

Legal charity Reprieve urged the British government to help.

"This is a terrible outcome for Khadija and her baby Malaika," Maya Foa of Reprieve said in a release.

"As happens in hundreds of cases, she was used as a drugs mule without her knowledge, and yet is facing life in a Pakistani prison."


Mirza | 7 years ago | Reply

It is great that this lady were not going to Saudi Arabia, Malaysia or Singapore. She would have been put to death for sure, no ifs and buts. If the amount of luggage or drugs is accurate then several people bring in extra luggage or with several kids she may be eligible for that much weight, hence extra amount of drugs. If it were a western court then the whole country would be crying foul.

Shakil | 7 years ago | Reply

63 Kgs cant be in luggage without her knowledge, using her kids luggage allowance s too. Looks like someone who suppose to clear her through security wasnt there. I dont know why she is trying to play Pak British card since day one? It doesn't make you above the law. An adult is responsible for his/her deeds.

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