Family: 360 Lashes for Wine Could Kill Elderly Brit

Karl Andree, 74, faces steep punishment in Saudi Arabia
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 13, 2015 11:05 AM CDT
Family: 360 Lashes for Wine Could Kill Elderly Brit
Family members fear Karl Andree will die during his punishment of 360 lashes after he was caught with homemade wine.   (AP Photo/Amel Emric)

British PM David Cameron is personally appealing for the release of a British who faces 360 lashes in Saudi Arabia—a punishment family members say will kill him. Karl Andree, 74, was arrested for transporting homemade wine in the port city of Jiddah in August 2014, reports the New York Times. Alcohol is banned in the country. Andree was sentenced to a one-year prison sentence, which he has served, and 360 lashes, which his family was "led to believe" would be voided because of his age and health, his daughter tells the BBC. There now "seems to be some question mark" over that, she says, noting the lashes would be equal to a death sentence. "He's survived three types of cancer with very strong cancer treatments, he's asthmatic, he has gout. He's not very well," she says. Andree remains behind bars awaiting the lashes.

A government rep says "we are actively seeking his release as soon as possible," noting Cameron will write to the Saudis directly. The rep adds embassy staff have been visiting Andree regularly. Andree's son, however, says his father didn't receive any visits for six months and fears the government isn't doing enough to ensure his release. "My mother has dementia and is deteriorating quite rapidly and my father really wants to come back and see her," he says. But "my father is at the bottom of a list," he tells BBC Radio 4, per the Guardian. "I feel that the business dealings with Saudi Arabia and the UK are probably taking priority." On Tuesday, the British government revealed it was ending a $9 million program to train Saudi prison workers over concerns about the country's justice system, per the Times. (A prominent Saudi blogger got a sentence of 1,000 lashes.)

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