Published Tuesday, 03 September 2013
Michaella McCollum Connolly pictured at a court hearing in Peru. (© Getty)
Just over £750 has been raised to date for 20-year-old Michaella McCollum Connolly from Dungannon, who is currently being held in jail in the South American country.
Her family have set up the appeal fund as they are "desperately trying to get her home".
On the fund's webpage, Michaella's sister Stephanie says: "To get Michaella home, it may be a lengthy process, but it all depends on her legal representation.
"So many of our supporters have asked us if they can donate to Michaella's plight. We appreciate this so much as legal fees, etc will be expensive."
In an update, Stephanie thanks those who have donated and says Michaella has been calling family back home every day.
We plan to visit Michaella as much as we can.
Stating that her sister is "okay considering", she says she is "still scared and overwhelmed" and that prison conditions aren't bad but the food is inedible.
Stephanie added that Michaella is trying to stay positive, but that she is "also being realistic in the fact that she may be there for a while".
Alongside Scottish co-accused Melissa Reid, also 20, Michaella has formally been charged with attempting to smuggle 11kg of cocaine worth £1.5m.
They face up to three years in prison before a trial, unless they plead guilty. In that instance, the legal process would speed up a little and they would receive lesser sentences.
However, if they plead not guilty and are subsequently convicted, they could each be jailed for up to 15 years.
© UTV News