AN Englishman was sentenced to death in Bangkok yesterday for drugs

trafficking and a 58-year-old Scot could die in a Thai jail if convicted

of trafficking in heroin.

Another Briton, Sandra Gregory, whose parents live at Pitcaple, near

Aberdeen, will be sentenced in Bangkok next month for possession of 89

grammes of heroin after her appeal for clemency was turned down. She

faces the prospect of life in prison.

Yesterday, Alan John Davies, 54, from Chesterfield, Derbyshire, became

the first European to be sentenced to death in Thailand after being

found guilty of drugs trafficking.

Davies was first given the sentence last month after a five-year court

battle. The sentence was confirmed yesterday but it is expected to be

reduced to life at a later date.

Under Thai law, conviction for trafficking in more than 100 grammes of

heroin carries the death penalty, while a life sentence is usually

imposed on those caught dealing in more than 20 grammes.

Davies was arrested with 6.5 kilos of heroin outside a bank in Bangkok

on January 4, 1990, together with two Germans.

Throughout his trial, he had to request adjournments due to ill

health. He is the only Briton on ''death row'' in Bangkwang Prison,


At another hearing yesterday, James Dougan Callender, 58, of Greenock,

was charged with trafficking in 200 grammes of heroin and remanded to

Khlong Prem Prison, Bangkok.

Mr Callender was arrested as he checked in for a Garuda Indonesian

airlines flight from Bangkok to Paris.

He had been living in the Phaholyothin area of Bangkok for the last

five years.

Thai police claimed he was carrying the drug internally, packaged in a

condom inserted into his rectum.

Mr Callender joins five other British nationals awaiting their fate on

similar charges.

Some claim they have been victimised following the controversial royal

pardon of two Birmingham girls, Patricia Cahill and Karyn Smith, in

1993, after the intervention of Prime Minister John Major.

The girls had been imprisoned for smuggling #4m of heroin out of


Other prisoners give varying reports on the amount of help given by

the British Embassy.

Brent Stirling, 25, from Perth was seized in an operation last

December involving Thai border police and agents of the US Drugs

Enforcement Administration in a shopping centre in Had Yai, close to

Thailand's border with Malaysia.

US officials are said to have posed as buyers when Stirling allegedly

turned up with 400 small packages containing the drugs.

He was later charged with trafficking almost 600 grammes of cocaine

and heroin. His case remains in limbo while his supporters lobby British

officials to investigate claims that he was set up by the police.

His parents returned from Thailand last week and said their son was in

good health and had received excellent help from embassy officials.

However, eight months ago, Patricia Hussain, 30, of Manchester, who

was sentenced to life imprisonment after being found guilty of

trafficking seven kilogrammes of heroin in Bangkok, received little

support from the British Embassy and no representation at her trial.

Sandra Gregory, 29, her cellmate in Lard Yao women's prison, in

contrast received more official attention.

Gregory, who pled guilty but failed in a plea for clemency on grounds

that she had been duped by her partner Robert Lock, 29, from Cambridge,

is due to be sentenced next month.

It was revealed in court that an official at the British Embassy

tipped off the police and asked them to search Lock and his travelling


Gregory said of Hussain's sentence: ''The Thais are making an example

of us -- this is the backlash from the royal pardon.''

Karl Maxwell-Smith, 65, a Scot who served almost six years in a Thai

prison after a false conviction for the murder of his 30-year-old wife,

told The Herald that in exchange for a #12,000 bribe he could have

secured release from a 100-year sentence.

Last night, a British Foreign Office spokesman said ''very regular''

visits were made to all British nationals in Thai jails.

He said that families were kept informed of these visits but the

Government would not interfere in the legal processes of another country

unless there had been ''a clear miscarriage of justice''.