William (Billy) Burton has been pardoned from a 30-year sentance in the Philippines for smuggling cannabis.
Thalidomide, Billy Burton from Rufforth was sentenced to a 30-year prison sentence in 1992 and has served nearly 20-years of that.
The release is conditional that the 48 year-old never returns to the Philippines and pays an equivalent of a £294 fine.
Guy Tweedy from Knaresborough, a leading Thalidomide champion who helped spearhead the Free Billy Burton campaign, said:
This is a fantastic Christmas present for all of Billy’s family, friends and supporters.
For the last two years we have lobbied the UK and Filipino governments for Billy’s release, and, I’m delighted to say, it has finally paid off. Billy has more than served his time and we are looking forward to getting him home.