Inmate reunites with brother after surprise release in UAE
Albert Santos Gayd broke into tears after he was told that he could go home with his brother.
Sharjah - Authorities also paid off his debt.
Published: Fri 1 Feb 2019, 8:56 PM
Last updated: Sat 2 Feb 2019, 6:34 PM
A 52-year-old Filipino inmate in a Sharjah prison was given a pleasant surprise by the authorities. Albert Santos Gayd had spent one year and three months in Sharjah Reformatory and Punitive Establishment (SRPE) over a bounced rental cheque he had given for a flat he had hired to establish a media production company.
The authorities had invited Gayd's brother to the UAE to meet his brother.
During a tolerance forum organised by the SRPE for inmates and families, a jail official called Gayd on to the stage and announced the happy news. He was told that his debt was paid off by the authorities and he could go home with his brother. He broke into tears and said he couldn't believe it at all.
He said the landlord of his flat lodged the complaint after he failed to pay the rent.
"The trial took place several times, but I couldn't pay because I'm in jail. And there was nobody to bail me out," he added.
"God put me in this situation because I was away from him. When I was in jail I read Bible hundred times and I prayed all the day. Here, the authorities allow all inmates to practise their religion and they respect everyone's beliefs. I was provided with Bible and anything I asked them to practise my religion. The treatment I received here was very good," said Gayd.
Reunion with families
It was an emotional reunion for 20 inmates when they got a chance to meet their families as part of the inmates' families forum organised by the Sharjah Police on the occasion of the Year of Tolerance.
The inmates' families were brought to the UAE by the Sharjah Police from various countries.
The families were brought in by the Sharjah Police from Sudan, Egypt, India, Kyrgyzstan and Oman to allow them spend time with their loved ones over dinner for almost five hours. The inmates who were sentenced for life or death and long jail terms were caught in mixed feelings while they received the family members kissing and hugging at the SRPE premises.
Emirati mother Fatima could not stop crying while hugging and kissing her 32-year-old son Hassan Al Balooshi, who was sentenced for life imprisonment in a drug case. After six years in jail, Hassan has become a different person now. "I was so young and didn't understand the right and wrong when I made some bad friends who got me involved in drug crimes. I never thought my life would end this way. But I made a great achievement in the jail and learned so many things. I completed my high school and the police paid for me to complete my degree at Sky University. I managed to develop my talent as an actor and I started to film a series to convey the message of the dangers of the drug, funded by the Emirati National Programme," said Al Balooshi.
Saeed, another Emirati inmate who was sentenced to death for murder of a compatriot in 2004 was greeted by all his sisters and brothers in the prison, as his parents passed away years ago. His family thanked the police for the initiative.
Ramil Gafurov from Kyrgyzstan was allowed to meet his wife Mohiuur, who came all the way from their country with the support of the Sharjah Police. He said he was happy to meet his wife after two years. Gafurov is in jail over issuing dud cheques worth Dh2 million when he started his company.
His wife said: "In his absence, I am finding it hard to take care of our children as he was the sole breadwinner of the family. I'm struggling without him and the children miss him a lot. They don't know he is in jail. I'm so happy to see my husband in good health."
A 29-year-old Iraqi woman, who was sentenced for drug consumption, was very happy to see her family. "I spent 116 days in jail. I started consuming drug pills when I went through a difficult psychological problem after losing my five-year-old daughter. Here, I received great support and help, especially from Col. Mona Soror, the director of women's jail who always comforted me and encouraged me to start my life afresh," she added.