Brit DJ Grooverider tells of Dubai prison ordeal

Raymond Bingham discusses experience after four-year drug possession sentence.

DJ SPEAKS: British DJ Grooverider has spoken about his Dubai prison ordeal. (Supplied)

DJ SPEAKS: British DJ Grooverider has spoken about his Dubai prison ordeal. (Supplied)

British DJ Grooverider has spoken about his Dubai prison ordeal, describing the experience as “appalling”.

Grooverider, real name Raymond Bingham, was jailed in Dubai in February after being caught with 2.16 grams of marijuana at Dubai Airport in November.

He was pardoned at the end of August as part of a Ramadan amnesty, serving 10 months of a four-year sentence.

In his first interview since his release, Bingham told British broadcaster the BCC he wanted to move on and the ordeal was “water under the bridge” now.

He said he had been caught by a customs inspector at the airport, after arriving to play a gig in the emirate.

The inspector had initially told him he would only be deported after the small piece of marijuana was found in the pocket of his jeans.

However, Bingham was instead taken to Dubai’s deportation jail where inmates informed him that his crime would see him jailed for four years.

"When I heard four years, I kind of dropped a little bit, I nearly fell on the floor," Bingham told the BBC.

He spent four months in the detention centre in conditions he described as "appalling".

"They don't have toilets, they have holes in the ground. There's eight people to a cell and they do treat you all right don't get me wrong, but it's just horrible seeing so many people come in for nothing," he said.

Following his sentence of four years in jail, he was transferred to Dubai's main prison where he remained until he was told of his Ramadan pardon.

“…when it got announced there were people crying and rolling around on the floor. Everybody was excited to finally get out of there. I felt relief just knowing it was coming to an end."

The Radio 1 DJ told the BBC he was looking forward to getting back to work.

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Please post responsibly. Commenter Rules

Posted by: Calvin Pinto

People, this happened 4 years ago , let it go.

Posted by: Miss Dubai

It's interesting that some commenters complain about Dubai?s "double standards". We live in a country with sharia law. Islam is the law. It?s the ?double standards? which irritate you so much that ensure that we non-believers can visit bars and eat bacon in a country where religion prevents it. Without its ?double standards?, Dubai wouldn?t be the international metropolis it is today. And none of us expats would be here earning a taxfree salary. I for one am glad that Dubai allow me to enjoy some home comforts, but are very clear and offer no double standards when it comes to drugs. I would say most western countries are far more hypocritical, outlawing drug abuse but never penalizing anyone caught doing it.

Posted by: british expat

He got served.....message is clear, Zero Tolerance to Durgs

Posted by: Lionheart

Unless you're a Pakistani cricketer ?

Posted by: Burd

What even made him think he could have fun in the middle east anyway? lol

Posted by: Saeed Iqbal

I support Charles comments 100%. Dubai and it's residents have double standards.

Posted by: Mansoor Khan

well.. what is double standards living in a country and then against its law.. come on guys.. they caught him with drugs what do u expect that they would have let him go. i heard stories about western countries questioning a person coz of his name and being detain for several hours. best example is Shahrukh khan

Posted by: Sam

@Saeed. Dont live in Dubai then mate - sure they can do without you...

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