Prisoners Abroad was featured in Shortlist magazine today, along with the story of Billy Moore, who we supported while in prison in Thailand.
Billy had a very difficult trial in prison; Survive some of the worst conditions imaginable. Prisoners Abroad has collected some practical tips for anyone arrested and detained abroad:
Try to learn some of the local language as soon as possible! It will help you if you can communicate with officers and others in custody and understand what is being said (possibly related to your case). Think about your diet – in most prisons you can buy extra food (if you have the money) so you can choose things that will help you get the vitamins and protein you need. Find out when you have access to water, especially if you are trapped in a hot country. Sometimes it’s just an hour a day – so fill up bottles where you can. Add salt to your water to help dryness; a common problem in countries like Thailand. Hygiene can be a major problem in prisons in less developed countries, and cell overload (which is common) can mean that diseases and conditions are quickly transmitted. By maintaining personal hygiene you can prevent this; get information about prison health care, such as regularity, and whether there are treatment costs.
Maintain your physical condition – keep your muscles and joints regular if you can – endorphins help you relax. Yoga is a popular way to stay healthy with limited space. Be careful in finding a lawyer to make sure your situation is not being exploited. Make sure they are qualified and experienced in your type of business, and discuss the fees you will be responsible for as soon as you agree to hire them. If you can’t afford a private attorney, find out how to provide legal aid in the country where you are being held. If the proceedings were not conducted in English, find out how to find an interpreter so that you understand what is going on. Don’t be afraid to get in touch! There are organizations that can help you. As a foreign detainee you have the right to contact your embassy in this country for consular assistance. Remember not to take responsibility – other countries’ prison systems can be very different from the UK. If you want to support the work of inmates abroad, make a donation today and help save the lives of British citizens in prisons abroad. We also support their families in the UK and those who return after serving their sentences and who need access to a relocation service.