Tara Brown Has Spoken Out From Her Lebanese Jail Cell
It’s the news that shocked Australians.
For the first time since the 60 Minutes crew were placed behind bars in the Lebanon capital of Beirut last week, after attempting to snatch the Australian children from their Grandmother using brutal force, Tara Brown has spoken out from behind the bars of her cell.
“Quite genuinely we are being treated well by the standards here, it’s fine, it’s not crowded,” she said.
“It really is quite hard to gauge at the moment what is happening so we are going through a process, we’ll see,” she said.
The latest word is that the four charges laid against each of the crew, which include a kidnapping charge, will not be dropped. There’s “no chance” according to a judge in Beirut.
The judge said: "There is no chance the charges will be dropped. It is a violation of the Lebanese law by all of these people"— Tom Steinfort (@tomsteinfort) 13 April 2016
A settlement will not help the 60 Minutes crew that has been detained as Judge Abdullah said their case would be delayed for another five days.
Nine News reporter Tom Steinfort said ''There is not chance these charges will be dropped. It is a violation of Lebanese law by all of these people.''
The 60 Minutes crew along with Australian woman Sally Faulkner have been remanded in custody to reappear before a judge in Beirut on Monday— Tom Steinfort (@tomsteinfort) 13 April 2016
The case hearing has been postponed until Monday, at which time the judge could decide they are guilty and there is the potential for up to 20 years imprisonment.
A Nine Network spokeswoman says it's a relief to know Lebanese authorities are treating the detained 60 Minutes crew well after they allegedly attempted to kidnap a Brisbane mum's two children.
"It is reassuring and comforting to know they are being treated well and in good health," she said.
The network is currently working with a Lebanese legal team and the Australian embassy in Lebanon to "get the team home as soon as possible".
The 60 Minutes crew, including journalist Tara Brown, and mum Sally Faulkner, who have already spent a week in detention, are expected to know within a week whether formal charges will be laid.
The Australians are accused of kidnapping and being members of a criminal gang, which can attract maximum sentences of up to three years and 10 years respectively.
On Wednesday Judge Rami Abdullah said "there is no way the charges will be dropped".
"There was a violation of the Lebanese authority by all these people. It's a crime."
But there's hope there might be some legal relief for all seven people facing charges if Faulkner and her estranged husband Lebanese-American Ali Elamine can reach an agreement that might allow some or all of alleged crimes to be dropped or downgraded.
Judge Abdullah stood the case over until Monday. All the defendants will remain in a pre-trial detention facility until then.