The families of two British men jailed after going plane spotting in Dubai are having to “beg and borrow” to raise desperately-needed cash for the legal battle to free them.
Conrad Clitheroe, 53, and his friend Gary Cooper, 45, were arrested after being spotted by an off-duty policeman taking notes near Fujairah Airport, about 128km from Dubai. Their families have appointed a lawyer to negotiate their freedom, but the fees cost many thousands of euro and could push them into debt.
They fear the legal battle could be lengthy after authorities in the United Arab Emirates declared they plan to move the men to Abu Dhabi to answer allegations that they breached national security. Their friend, ex-pat Neil Munro, is also in jail facing the same claims.
Mr Clitheroe’s wife Valerie, from Stockport Greater Manchester, said: “We are all sick with worry. We have made an appointment with a lawyer, but they won’t do anything until they have been paid €6,175 for Conrad and €6,175 for Gary.
“It is a matter of beg, borrow and stealing from family to get it. It is going to be a struggle, but we will have to do what we can. The trio are facing their 10th night on concrete beds sleeping 20 to a cell at Fujairah prison.
Arrested after being spotted by an off-duty policeman, the men were taken to a station and signed an Arabic document apologising and promising not to plane spot in the country again. The practice is legal in the UAE but is not widely understood.
Source: The Irish Examiner