A SNIPER-turned-butcher from Chester is to be released by Indian authorities nine months after being detained for straying into territorial waters.
Ray Tindall, 38, a married father-of-one, was part of a six-man team of ex-soldiers on board an anti-pirate ship impounded in October.
The married father-of-one was released from Chennai’s jail in March, but was ordered to remain in the country and stay in touch with local police.
But yesterday it emerged that he had sent Chester MP Stephen Mosley an email declaring that all the charges against him and his colleagues had been thrown out by a judge. He is expected to return home to his family at The Crescent in Newton within the next few days, after paperwork relating to his release is finalised.
Mr Mosley, who has stayed in touch with Mr Tindall’s family and the Foreign Office, said: “It’s great news. I’m delighted we have got a judgement and Ray can start making arrangements to come home and get on with his life.”
More than 50,000 people signed a petition urging the Government to push for the release of the six former soldiers.
They were arrested for allegedly carrying weapons and straying into India’s waters while carrying out a job protecting freight ships from pirate attacks.
Last year Mr Tindall made the transition from ‘master sniper’ to ‘master butcher’, starting up a family-run sausage-making business from his kitchen that went on to won an award.
He set up Faraly’s Fine Produce after calling time on his 17-year career with the Army, during which time he saw action in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Iraq and was stationed with two different regiments, the 1st Battalion Yorkshire Regiment and the 1st Battalion Royal Welsh, then based at the Dale Barracks in Chester.