Mum held in Dubai for calling ex-husband's new wife a 'horse' back in UK after 'horrendous ordeal'

A mother who was held in Dubai over Facebook posts calling her ex-husband's wife a "horse" is back in Britain after being freed from "the most horrendous" ordeal.

Laleh Shahravesh touched down in Heathrow on Friday morning, according to the Detained in Dubai campaign group that supported her.

Ms Shahravesh, from Richmond, southwest London, was reunited with her 14-year-old daughter Paris in emotional scenes at the airport.

As she hugged her daughter, the 55-year-old said: "I'm really, really happy to be reunited."

She thanked Detained in Dubai chief executive Radha Stirling "who worked tirelessly to get me home to my daughter".

Ms Shahravesh was visiting United Arab Emirates for the funeral of her ex-husband Pedro Correia Dos Santos in March with Paris and was detained under controversial cyber-crime laws.

A complaint was made over posts sent three years ago and Ms Shahravesh was warned she faced prosecution and up to two years in prison.

But a judge at a court hearing on Thursday ordered that her passport was to be returned if she paid a fine of 3,000 UAE Dirham (£624).

Speaking to Sky News, which was present for a phone call with Paris, she said: "It's been the most horrendous period of my life.

"I've never been separated from Paris in this way and every day part of me was dying from being away from her, during a time when I knew she needed me the most. So yes, it's been very traumatic."

The pair had travelled to the United Arab Emirates on 10 March for the funeral of her ex-husband, who was also Paris' father.

When she found out he had remarried in 2016, Ms Shahravesh called his new wife, Samah al Hammadi, from Tunisia, a "horse" on Facebook.

The Detained in Dubai campaign group welcomed the decision to let Ms Shahravesh's return home, but said "serious concerns remain regarding the many risks for foreigners in the UAE".

Radha Stirling, the campaign group's chief executive, said: "We maintain that the case against Laleh should have been dismissed at the outset, and while we are pleased that her nightmare is over, her conviction on this absurd case sets a dangerous precedent.

"We are pleased that Laleh will be allowed to return home to be reunited with her daughter Paris; but serious concerns remain regarding the many risks for foreigners in the UAE, as well as the apparent docility of the UK consular staff in the Emirates and the refusal of the FCO [Foreign and Commonwealth Office] to update its travel warnings for British citizens to provide them with a more accurate evaluation of the dangers they face in the UAE."