"Our embassy will now help her secure a trip back"
Tereza Hluskova, aged 25, a model from the Czech Republic has been released from a Pakistani prison after she allegedly smuggled nine kilograms of heroin into the country in 2018.
She had been sentenced to eight years and eight months in prison in 2019 and was also required to pay a £600 fine but was released on Saturday, November 20, 2021.
Czech Foreign Affairs Minister Jakub Kulhánek confirmed the news on Twitter and wrote:
“The Czech citizen was released from prison in Pakistan today.
“Our embassy will now help her secure a trip back to the Czech Republic.”
Hluskova was acquitted by an appeals court in Lahore on Monday, November 1, 2021, as “the prosecution failed to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt”, according to her lawyer Saif ul Malook.
She said she had come to Pakistan for modelling work and was planning to continue on to Ireland via Dubai but was arrested at Lahore’s Allama Iqbal International Airport.
Footage released by Pakistani customs officials showed them revealing the hidden narcotics inside the model’s suitcase after she managed to get through two security checks.
Her facilitator, who was also arrested, had said that she worked with her brother’s friend to smuggle drugs from Pakistan to foreign countries.
However, at the time of her arrest and also during her trial, Hluskova maintained her innocence and said that someone else had planted the heroin within her luggage.
The model told investigators: “They gave me something for luggage, three statues or something.
“They said it was gifts.
“I didn’t know there was something inside.”
Drug trafficking is a serious offence in Pakistan and the arrests of both Pakistanis and foreigners alike at airports is not an uncommon occurrence.
The country shares a long border with Afghanistan and is therefore often a part of drug smuggling routes from there to other parts of the world.
For example, in November 2020, a nine-day anti-smuggling operation ended with the seizure of 100kg of heroin in 99 separate packets which were travelling from Pakistan.
In addition to that, there were also 20 packets of synthetic drugs, five 9mm pistols and a satellite phone set which were discovered by authorities.
They had been hidden in empty fuel tanks to transport to western countries, such as Australia ,with authorities suggesting the source could be a multinational operation of Afghan heroin trafficking.
Czech model Tereza Hluskova does not appear to have provided a statement following her release.