Statement from the Chennai 6 and their families

Four of the Chennai 6 -Billy, Ray, Nick and John

From the freedom of their hotel in India today (Wednesday) Billy Irving, John Armstrong, Nicholas Simpson, Ray Tindall, Nick Dunn, and Paul Towers – collectively known as the Chennai 6 – have issued this joint statement on behalf of themselves and their families.

“After four long years, we, along with the 29 crew of the Seaman Guard Ohio, have been cleared by the Appeal Court. We want to thank the court for reaching this decision. We are all in good health and eager to return to our families and friends. Whilst we wait for permission to leave India and come home, we ask the media to respect our privacy and that of our families during this process.

“We want to thank our legal counsel, the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and The Mission to Seafarers for helping us reach this point. We have been glad to receive the many messages of support and care packages during our time in prison, and ask for time to reflect on our experience and to prepare for home.

“We kindly ask that any individuals or media interested in our story do not contact us or our families directly at present. Please respect our collective wish for privacy at this time.”