Our names are Russel Whitmore and Debbie Caswell We are the parents of Lance Whitmore. We will try and explain why we are desperately seeking your help.
We have used all of our savings which were set aside for retirement for the defence and welfare of our only son. We never thought we would ever have to make a compassionate appeal like this, by asking for the help of others in order to continue the fight to help save our son’s future … Please read on..
As you read about the circumstances related to our son and subsequently, the reasons for our appeal, please consider how you, yourself would react, and what you would do, to try and protect your child if you were unfortunate enough to find yourself in a similar position.
At the time, Lance was a young man, 26 years of age, he was suffering from a devastating chain of events which are summarised later in this story which led him into severe depression. He was allowed to be taken advantage of, and led into the terrifying world of narcotics by his “friend”.
Over 3 years ago, Lance was convicted of supplying substances in Thailand to which he was sentenced to 50 years in a Thai prison along with a fine of 1,250,000 Thai Baht. A very harsh sentence that shocked the world's authorities for such a small quantity involved.
Having spent all our savings and sold off all assets to pay for lawyers and legal fees, we are left with a massive void and a continual nightmare of trying to raise the fine of £23,000 to enable the Thai/UK bi-lateral agreement to start the prisoner transfer process to get our son back on UK soil. Unless we achieve this, Lance will be left to serve a disproportionate sentence in Thailand. The funds raised will all go towards the outstanding fine.
Lance will be eligible for the transfer in August 2018 and we are hoping to reach our target as soon as possible.
If by yours, and others generosity, a miracle happens and the funds are raised and Lance is returned to the UK, then under the UK / Thai transfer agreement, Lance will not simply be released, he will still have to serve part of his sentence, though, it can be carried out back home in the UK, where he will get the help he needs both from close family and the support of the UK authorities.
If we can’t raise the funds needed to get Lance back to the UK, we dread to think how long he will survive in a Thai prison. We are begging people to help save our son’s health and his future.
Lance's offence was one of naivety, brought on by severe depression, coerced into agreeing to act as a deliveryman for his “friend.”
Confused, Distressed and extremely vulnerable, Lance agreed to deliver some pills for a “friend”. What was not known, was he was delivering them to an undercover policeman who was conducting a “sting” operation. He was arrested on the spot and taken to a “Safe house” (a place that was not disclosed to anyone)
However, due to the circumstances that led to this offence, we ask the question “should Lance, our son, be punished for the rest of his life in a Thai jail, without professional help or the support of his family in the UK?
The last thing we ever thought we would be doing, is writing this plea for help to save our son. We are proud parents and love our son with our hearts. We know what our son did was very wrong, and many of you will find this inexcusable, but had he been in the right frame of mind, we know he would have chosen never to be involved with these new "friends" and certainly not help them in delivering tablets. Everyone deserves a second chance in life, please try to find compassion in your hearts and help his family to raise the funds to pay the courts fine so we can start the Thai/UK transfer agreement procedure to bring our son home to the UK to complete his jail sentence and receive professional help and support he dearly needs."
You can read Lance's story here
Here is a brief summary that led up to the offence
Lance and his Thai Fiancée were looking forward to getting married. Lance was legally working for a Thai Oil Company having acquired a Thai work permit. Their future together was financially safe and they were happily looking forward to a future together, until the events that follow…
Lance with his fiancée 'Tree'
Word had come from his homeland in England, to say that his Grandfather was dying from severe lung cancer. He had only a few weeks left to live. Needless to say, Lance was horrified. He was over 12,000 miles away. He needed to be there with his Grandfather. A Grandfather that he idolized and a Grandfather he adored with so many happy memories during his childhood, like so many of us do. A Grandfather that was always there for him, Lance wanted to be there to support his Grandfather in return. Lance told the Thai oil company, that he was legally working for,. The oil company were compassionate about the dilemma and agreed to allow Lance some compassionate leave….
Lance and his Grandad in happier times
Both Lance and his father travelled back to the UK to be at their Father, and Grandfather’s side. It was a heartbreaking and devastating time for both of them. Lance felt helpless… There was nothing he could do except wait for the end, and pray for his Grandfather not to suffer. Lance wasn’t prepared for the next bombshell that was about to erupt.
The news Lance received could not have been more devastating to him. His fiancée of five years, had been rushed into hospital, with HSE (cerebral dysfunction), she was on life support and wasn’t expected to live much longer. Lance obviously was aghast at this news and was left with an impossible decision to make. His world was falling apart at great speed. His father convinced Lance, whose emotions were being torn between the two, to return to Thailand to “be there” for his fiancée, whilst he remained with his own Father.
Lance immediately returned to Thailand and spent days, without sleep or nourishment at his fiancée’s bedside, holding her hand and praying for her recovery, until a Doctor approached him and told him to go home and get some rest. The Thai Doctor assured Lance that nothing would happen on the future of his fiancée until the following Monday.
However, without Lance knowing anything, his fiancée’s parents had made the decision to turn off the life support machine that Lance’s fiancée was dependent upon. Lance returned to the hospital only to be told his fiancée had died. Just days after he had been given the news that his Grand-father had also passed away.
Lance's last farewell to his fiancée
All of this happened within a short space of time and was bound to leave a massive void for Lance.
The turmoil continues
Lance was now in a severe state of depression. He couldn’t be at his Grandfathers’ side and he wasn’t there for his young fiancée who died from the fatal illness (HSE) (cerebral dysfunction) all within a few weeks of each other. To make matters worse, The Oil Company that allowed him compassionate leave then decided to terminate his employment without reason, just days after his fiancée’s death. His world was now in tatters. He was heart-broken and somehow felt that the cruel blows that life had stacked against him were somehow all his fault.
He tried to carry on as normal as he could, and try to make the best of his life in Thailand, but was always thinking of the past and the devastation that had become of him in such a short period of time. He started to drink in an attempt to block out and try to erase all of the nightmares that were constantly haunting him.
In his depressed state, he started to hang around with “new” found friends and tried to “fit in” around them. He was at this time in his darkest hours, a very vulnerable young man and easy prey for others to take advantage of his good nature. Confused, Distressed and extremely vulnerable, he agreed to deliver some pills for a “friend”. What was not known was that he was delivering them to an undercover policeman who was conducting a “sting” operation. He was arrested on the spot and taken to a “Safe house” (a place that was not disclosed to anyone)
His crime was one of naivety, brought on by severe depression, coerced into agreeing to act as a deliveryman for his new “friend.” However, due to the circumstances that led to this offence, should Lance, our son, be punished for the rest of his life in a Thai jail, without professional help or the support of his family in the UK.
The last thing we ever thought we would be doing is writing this plea for help to save our son .We are proud parents and we love our son with all our hearts. We know what our son did was very wrong, and many of you will find this inexcusable, but had he been in the right frame of mind, we are convinced he would have chosen to never be involved with these new "friends" and certainly not help them in delivering tablets. Everyone deserves a second chance in life, please try to find compassion in your hearts and help his family to raise the funds to pay the courts fine so we can start the transfer procedure and bring our son home to the UK to complete his jail sentence and receive professional help and support he dearly needs."
We would be indebted to you all if we can manage to raise the funds needed. And we would appreciate if you share this appeal on your social media pages.
We have a facebook group that you are welcome to join
Visit our facebook group here
The Help Lance website can be found here
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