Tuesday, July 07,2009,4:58 PM
Subject: Legal Cell, Human Rights
Name: "Freddie Hiller
I wonder if you are able to highlight our daughter's (Roxanne Hillier)
plight in an effort to get the petition signatures up please? This
will help us to request the President of South Africa to make an
effort to free our daughter who has been innocently sent to prison in
Roxanne's passion for diving led her to the UAE where she
was living her dream since November 2008. This however came to an
abrupt end and turned into her (and her family's) worst nightmare.
Roxanne and her boss were arrested at the dive
shop in the UAE on 16th May 2009. They were both convicted and
sentenced for 1. Having sex out of wedlock and 2. being in the same
room. Despite the fact that the medical tests carried out on them
were negative and there was no evidence against them, Roxanne was
sentenced to 3 months in prison and her boss to 6 months.
appeal, Roxanne's conviction and sentence was upheld and she was sent
back to prison to complete her sentence, BUT HER BOSS WAS ACQUITTED on
the charge of having sex with her AND WAS RELEASED. How can Roxanne
be guilty of having sex with her boss, yet he was found innocent?
Please give your support by signing the petition and sending on to
everyone you know, asking them to do the same. This is our last chance
and hope with the international community behind her, she can go free as soon
as possible. Read the News Paper article below which explains the
situation much better than I could and look at her Face book support
page that has all the news reports, etc. If you Google "Roxanne
Hillier UAE" there are numerous articles about her case.
A Face book group - "Friend Support for Roxanne Hillier" - has been set
up with ~ 1,900 (to date) members and a petition has been created with
around ~ 960 (to date) names so far.
Please sign the petition and join the Face book Support Page
Petition! Free Roxanne Hillier from prison in the UAE (Please follow
all 4 steps - Sign, Confirm, Share and Thank you - in order to
complete the process):
Roxanne Hillier, a 22-year-old, South African national, has been in
prison for seven-weeks in Sharjah emirate despite medical tests
showing nothing happened and the co-accused, an Emirati, being freed.
Her father spoke to PRESS this week about the shocking moment the
family found out what happened and the campaign they are leading to
get her freed.
Freddie Hillier, who has joint British and South African citizenship,
believes Roxanne was caught in the “crossfire” after
a complaint was made to police.
He said: “We believe it was a tip off, somebody tipped the police off,
we don’t know who.
“But we think it was aimed at her boss and Roxanne was caught in the
crossfire and took the bullet for him.”
Roxanne, who had been working at a diving centre in Khor Fakkan since
November last year as a dive rescuer,
was accused of having sex out of wedlock and being in the same room as
the 41-year-old man.
Hillier said police raided the centre on May 16 and they found her
boss on the stairs.
boss on the stairs.
Roxanne, who had been using the bedroom at the centre because plumbers
were repairing a leak and renovating
the bathroom in her Khor Fakkan apartment, was arrested after police
broke into her room.
Hillier said: “They got her alone and they took them to hospital for tests.
“The tests came back negative no signs of sexual intercourse taking place.
He says Roxanne signed a confession written in Arabic hoping it would
be the end of the story.
The confession was later retracted.
On Sunday, June 21, Roxanne lost her court appeal and was ordered to
complete her three month sentence.
However her boss was cleared by judges and his original six month
sentence was cut to one for the lesser charge
of being alone with Roxanne when police carried out the raid and was released.
Hillier said: “We do not understand how they can find one guilty of
sex and the other innocent, to me that’s just double standards.
“Appeal courts are not prepared to look at the evidence put in front of them.
“How do find her guilty after a confession made under duress, which
was later retracted and the reasons given she made
it was that she was scared.
“She made up the story, which they wanted to hear and in the hope they
would let go of her.
“And to make matters worse the appeal case was upheld, she has to
return to prison and her boss got acquitted of the charge and
released on a lesser charge of one month of being in the same building.
“We are going to try and fight everything in our power to get Roxanne
released because she has been innocently been jailed.”
There is confusion as to how and when a further appeal can happen. The
family have been told it could take anything from three months to a
Hillier said: “The trauma it has put our family through is something
that I can’t really explain.
“I’ve never known my wife cry in the 30 years I’ve known her and she
cried on Sunday when Roxanne was taken away.
“We cry every day. They say cowboys don’t cry but we are not cowboys.
“Roxanne is being treated well but it is unjust to keep her there for
something she didn’t do.
“She is fighting. She is trying to be strong, she was totally
humiliated and her dignity was taken.”
The ordeal has also forced Roxanne’s sister Maxine, also a dive
rescuer in Abu Dhabi, to quit her job.
He describes Roxanne as an outgoing and friendly woman who treated
everyone with respect and was living her dream.
He said he was happy the accused man had been released because he had
done nothing wrong.
Thank you for taking time to read this and we sincerely hope that we
have your support.
Freddie and Ina Hillier