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Drug prisoner's appeal due

PUBLISHED: 12:31 08 October 2009 | UPDATED: 17:14 25 August 2010

THE appeal hearing of a backpacker jailed for 10 years for drugs trafficking in India is due to start today.

THE appeal hearing of a backpacker jailed for 10 years for drugs trafficking in India is due to start today.

Patrick Malluzzo, 32, of Upper Heath Lane, Dartford, was arrested and jailed in January 2004 for a crime he claims he did not commit.

The former pupil at St Columba Catholic School for Boys, Bexleyheath, has had several appeals delayed but is due to stand before a judge at the Indian High Court in Rajasthan.

He was jailed after cannabis was found in a bag he had lent to a friend while travelling.

Jago Russell, chief executive of Fair Trials International, the charity which represents Mr Malluzzo, said: "After a grossly unfair trial, Patrick Malluzzo has already spent years in an Indian jail waiting for his appeal to be heard. Today represents a crucial test for the Indian justice system, an opportunity to prove to the world that they can right this miscarriage of justice."

His devoted father Salvatore Malluzzo, 63, was preparing to travel to India as the Times went to press.

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