'I never want to go through that again' - Nottinghamshire cancer patient jailed in Dubai speaks of his traumatic ordeal

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A Nottinghamshire man who was detained in a Dubai prison for five weeks over his anti-anxiety medication has vowed never to leave the country again.

Cancer sufferer Perry Coppins, of Eastwood, claims he was left at death's door after the authorities withdrew the medication he had been on for 21 years.

The 61-year-old maritime security officer was arrested on November 1, after a customs official at a seaport became concerned about the medication which had "been checked many times" in Dubai before.

The father-of-three was carrying his medicine, which is legal in the United Arab Emirates with a prescription, and his prescription.

Mr Coppins was handcuffed and taken to a police station where he was given a drugs test.

Drugs were found in his system and so, the next morning, he was taken to prison.

Mr Coppins, who has prostate cancer, told the Post he went through the "most awful withdrawal" after his anxiety medication was taken away from him - a move he described as "life-threatening".

He said: "I was so ill I gave up and I knew I was going to die.

"I lost a lot of weight, I developed gastroenteritis. The withdrawal - I never want to go through that again. You don't have to be asleep - it's a nightmare, a daymare. Even the brain starts to turn on you and starts to give you the most shocking images."

Perry Coppins, who has been jailed in Dubai

Perry Coppins, who has been jailed in Dubai

Added to this, Mr Coppins said he slept on concrete throughout his time in prison, although he said he can't remember too much of his experience because of how ill he was.

Despite his ordeal, he told the Post he was touched by the kindness of some of the other prisoners, including a man who bought him food when he became ill.

Mr Coppins said: "I lost so much weight I couldn't stand unaided. I couldn't walk. I went blind."

He was eventually able to seek medical help when he was released on bail.

He went to a hospital for emergency treatment and was placed on oxygen in an intensive care unit.

Campaign group Detained in Dubai became involved in Mr Coppins case, and on Saturday (January 6) he had his passport returned to him and was told he was free to go.

He arrived back home on Wednesday (January 10) and said he is "euphoric" to be back.

However, Mr Coppins remains concerned about his physical and mental health after what he went through and told the Post he is "never leaving England again".

He has also parted ways with the company that employed him and has been left cash-strapped after spending his savings on mounting legal and living expenses as he waited to face court.