Arab Times

Briton home, avoids lashing

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LONDON, Nov 11, (AFP): A British man imprisoned in Saudi Arabia for breaking antialcoho­l laws has returned to Britain, the foreign ministry said on Wednesday, after a diplomatic storm that threatened to dent UKSaudi relations.

The family of Karl Andree, 74, said he had

been told he faced 350 lashes after a year behind bars for being caught with homemade wine and appealed to the British government in a tabloid-led campaign.

Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond brought up the case during a visit to Riyadh last month and the Saudi authoritie­s said he would be released.

“Karl Andree was released from prison hours after my visit to Riyadh on Oct 28,” Hammond said in a statement on Wednesday.

“I’m grateful to the Saudi Arabian government,” he said.

“It’s through the strength and breadth of the relationsh­ip between our nations that we have been able to overcome a difficult issue like this.”

Saudi Arabia’s legal code is based on Islamic sharia law.

Andree, a grandfathe­r of seven who has survived cancer, had been living in Saudi Arabia for 25 years, working in the oil industry.

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