Pregnant UK woman denies smuggling heroin from Pakistan

The BBC's Orla Guerin: "She described prison conditions as absolutely horrific"

A pregnant woman from Birmingham has appeared in court in Pakistan after being arrested last month with heroin worth £3.2m in several suitcases.

Khadija Shah, 25, has been held in custody with her daughter, aged four, and her five-year-old son.

She says she had been on holiday in Pakistan with relatives and had no idea what was in the cases.

The BBC's Orla Guerin said if Miss Shah was convicted she could face the death penalty.

Miss Shah, who has not been formally charged, said some men asked her to take the bags to the UK as a favour.

Miss Shah was accused, at the court in Rawalpindi, of trying to smuggle 63 kilos of heroin.

She said if Miss Shah was convicted she could face the death penalty.

Khadija Shah Miss Shah is due back in court on 29 June, when she is expected to be formally charged

Miss Shah, who was six months pregnant, was arrested in Islamabad in May as she tried to board a flight back to Birmingham with her children.

Miss Shah told the BBC: "I had no idea what was in them. I wouldn't do that with two young children".

She told our correspondent conditions in prison were absolutely horrific, with stifling heat and overcrowded cells.

The legal charity Reprieve says Miss Shah's children contracted measles in jail, and claims other pregnant women have died in the prison where she is being held.

Reprieve said Miss Shah could not understand the legal proceedings against her as she did not speak Urdu.

She is due back in court on 29 June, when she is expected to be formally charged.

BBC Birmingham & Black Country



Min. Night 5 °C


  • FridgeCool customer

    The village that has just got its first fridge

  • Lincoln Perkins (in the middle of the image) carried Churchill's coffin with seven other menNear miss

    How pallbearers almost dropped Churchill's coffin

  • Josef Mengele in SS uniformThe twins of Auschwitz

    How a Nazi doctor experimented on identical siblings

  • Alok'Red market'

    The desperate patients in India turning to illegal blood donors

  • Bank House, 27 King Street, LeedsIn pictures

    Some of the office buildings new to the National Heritage List

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.