Picture: Pexels
Durban - Activist Pat Gerber hopes that the New Year will bring about the signing of a policy enabling South African prisoners serving sentences in other countries to do their time back home.

“They have drafted the policy document. It has been lying around in Cabinet for almost a year now, waiting for approval,” said Gerber of the organisation Locked Up.

“I would be happy if they make an effort to do something about it.”

This year, it has been reported that around 800 South Africans are serving sentences in foreign prisons.

Gerber said this month alone four people had been arrested in Miami, US, one in Turkey and another in The Netherlands.

“That’s a pretty average month,” she said.

Among those incarcerated is Durban-born Tyrone Coetzee, who is on death row in Vietnam for drug trafficking. He was arrested in 2016 and sentenced to death in August.

His family is hoping he will be able to have an appeal hearing but have received little information from the south-east Asian country.

Coetzee’s brother, Elton, said the family had sent money over to him but understood that he had received only half of it.

Independent on Saturday