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On the 30th of January, Detained in Dubai celebrated its 15th anniversary in London with friends, clients and members of the media and legal community. It was truly an honour to have so many wonderful people join us for such a special occasion and we thank everyone for their support.


Lord Clement Jones has advocated for British citizens wrongfully detained abroad. We were privileged to hear his powerful words of support for Dubai prisoners and for our organisation’s work. His Lordship has tirelessly advocated for Ryan Cornelius, Charles Ridley and has now come to learn about Albert Douglas, who shares a cell with Ryan and Charles.  "We are truly grateful to have the support of an esteemed member of the House of Lords", added Radha Stirling, CEO of Detained in Dubai.

Albert’s son Wolfgang passionately told the harrowing story of his father’s wrongful detention and torture, a shocking representation of what lies behind the “glamorous” tourist destination.  "Wolfgang has been tirelessly advocating for his innocent father's release from Dubai jail.  He will never give up, we love his passion and we love him," said Ms Stirling.

John Glendinning arrived from Scotland, delivering an emotional speech after his brother Brian was released from an Iraqi prison. He was held over a small Qatar bank debt. In celebrating Brian’s release, we were reminded that others like Hussein Yactine remain locked up in foreign jails over small bank debts, a violation of Interpol’s charter.

Brian has been desperately trying to help former cellmate, Hussein, get home.  Stirling was elated to finally meet John in person after spending day and night on the phone to him during Brian's incarceration,"It was an absolute pleasure to work intensely with Brian's family to secure his freedom but as Brian says, there are still dozens of people detained abroad and the fight goes on.  I look forward to seeing Brian and his family in Scotland later this year.  They are forever my friends".

Many attendees were unaware of some of the horrendous cases Detained in Dubai has seen over the years. Veteran Perry Coppins spoke of the time he spent in prison and how it has subsequently impacted his life. Perry was locked up for prescription medicine, until a kind doctor told him to call “Detained in Dubai”. “I was out three days later”, he told the room. 


Radha has been friends with Perry ever since his release.  "It was so good to see Perry in person again.  His experience in the UAE had a terrible impact on his life.  His story was very emotional for those who had only heard it for the first time."

The family of a British businessman who has had his Dubai jail sentence extended by 20 years despite completing his original 10-year term are pleading with the UK Foreign Office to raise his case with the highest authorities in the Emirate. The family hope that the pardon and release of Matthew Hedges, a British PhD student convicted of spying, could shine a light on the plight of their bankrupt relative, who they claim is effectively being held due to the stance adopted by Dubai Islamic Bank, from which he borrowed money before the global financial crisis. Ryan Cornelius is one of four inmates who earlier this year completed a 10-year term for defrauding the bank. However, a Dubai court ruled that their sentences would be extended by another 20 years unless they settled a $430m debt.


Founder and CEO

Radha Stirling is a leading human rights advocate, crisis manager and policy consultant, focusing on the UAE and the wider Middle East. She is the founder and CEO of British based organisation Detained in Dubai and its subsidiaries, (which have helped thousands of victims of injustice over the past ten years).


In 2010, she expanded her work to include countries throughout the Gulf region; dealing with both civil and criminal cases.  She has provided expert witness testimony in several high profile extradition and arbitration cases, while lobbying for Interpol reform.  


Given her breadth of experience in financial disputes, Ms Stirling also provides expert risk assessment for investors and advice on business strategies in the Gulf.  She has actively negotiated on behalf of corporate clients and investors, assisted in recovering stolen assets, and intervened to secure their freedom from unlawful detention.  


Ms Stirling frequently appears in international media to discuss human rights and legal issues in the Middle East.  She recently addressed the United Nations and works closely with Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International.  Ms Stirling has provided policy advice to both the Australian and British governments, and is a frequently invited speaker on foreign policy issues related to the Gulf states and broader region.


Her high-profile media campaigns and legal work have influenced the release of countless high profile prisoners in the UAE, notably David Oliver, Richard Lau, Ellie Holman, Matt Joyce and Marcus Lee, Safi Qurashi, Scott Richards, Conrad Clitheroe, Gary Cooper, Farzan Athari, Billy Barclay, Jamie Harron, Laleh Shahravesh and André Gauthier.  Ms Stirling publishes regular articles and reports, often covering human rights issues, political prisoners, Middle Eastern finance and debt laws, social media laws, cybercrime laws and Interpol red notice abuse. Radha has worked extensively at parliament level and closely with Senators and MP’s. Her work at Australian Parliament ensured provisions to safeguard citizens against human rights violations were included in their extradition treaty with the UAE.  Stirling acted for HRH Sheikha Latifa Bin Rashid Al Maktoum which lead to a United Nations investigation into her disappearance from a US yacht in international waters.

Stirling delivered a speech at a Frontiers of Freedom conference in November 2018, focussing largely on the increased influence of Saudi Arabia and the UAE into American politics and media, questioning whether these US “allies” are acting in the best interests of the States.  Stirling presented a speech discussing the risks of investing in the UAE and wider gulf region at the April 2019 Offshore Alert Conference in Miami, then visited Washington DC in May to discuss the pressing issue of Interpol Abuse with policy advisors.

Since founding Detained in Dubai in 2008, she has held various senior roles in law firms in the Middle East and was most recently described by Daily Beast as running "an extraordinarily slick - and convincing - PR campaign ostensibly designed to free her [Princess Latifa]".

Stirling launched her podcast Gulf in Justice in 2020, focusing on current affairs in the gulf region.

Stirling is a member of policy institutes Chatham House in London and Heritage Foundation in Washington DC.  She is also a member of Britain's public relations association, CIPR.


We work with a network of experienced specialists both in the UAE and abroad.  We have alliances with law firms and advocates internationally, including most of the Middle East, Asia, Europe, Australia and the United States.  We work alongside and instruct leading experts in their fields, as well as working with the world's leading human rights groups and policy think tanks.

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