Southwick resident released from six week '˜ordeal' in Turkish custody

A Southwick resident who was detained in a Turkish jail for six weeks after a family holiday says he is relieved to be finally home.

Toby Robyns was arrested on suspicion of attempting to leave the country with coins he found while snorkelling, according to his MP, Tim Loughton.

Mr Robyns said today: “I am delighted and relieved to be back at home with my family after the ordeal of the last six weeks.

“It was never my intention to break any laws in Turkey and it has been difficult to understand how to impress my innocence to the authorities when it resulted from a simple mistake.”

Toby Robyns was stopped at Bodrum Airport on August 19 when returning from holiday with his family.

At the time his MP, Tim Loughton, confirmed that Mr Robyns had been arrested on suspicion of finding Turkish artefacts and not notifying the authorities.

Mr Loughton said Mr Robyns had found coins while snorkelling.

But after being detained for six weeks he finally returned home to Southwick on Monday.

Mr Robyns praised his family: “They have been unwavering in their support and worked hard to secure my release.

“I am also very grateful to friends and members of the local community who have been very supportive in so many ways which has undoubtedly made a difficult time more bearable.

“I am particularly grateful for the practical assistance and encouragement provided by the Foreign Office and especially the embassy staff in Turkey, my MP, Tim Loughton, my attorney, Murat Yilmaz, and my family contact in the UK, Burcu Orphan Holmgren, both of London Legal International.

“Given the pressure placed on my family over recent weeks I would be grateful if our privacy would be respected whilst we return to normal life and we do not intend to make any further comment.”