The families of Six British seamen, including Nick Dunn from Ashington, are hopeful that they will be able to go home in the next few days.
Dubbed the Chennai Six, the men were part of a crew of 35 on board the anti-piracy ship MV Seaman Guard Ohio who were arrested by Indian authorities in October 2013 and then detained.
The charges were quashed in April 2014, but Indian police appealed the decision and this meant that the crew had to stay in the Asian country. They were then jailed by a judge in January 2016.
The judge for the crew’s appeal ruled last week that all charges against the 35 men be dropped with immediate effect and the fines they were ordered to pay be refunded.
The Chennai Six were then escorted out of Chennai Central Prison by British consulate officials.
Talks have continued with the Indian authorities this week and the men went along to the British Embassy in the area earlier today.
They need Q Branch police in India to not appeal and issue a non-objection certificate in order to return home.
Nick’s sister Lisa travelled to India last week and speaking to the Leader just before getting her flight back to the UK, she said it was “wonderful and very emotional” seeing him as a free man after what he has gone through.
She added: “The Supreme Court ordered a few days ago that the captain of the vessel could return home to the Ukraine as he has terminal cancer.
“As a result, we believe there’s no chance that Q Branch will lodge an appeal, so now it’s a case of the men getting all the necessary paperwork signed so they can return home.”
Meanwhile, a maritime security consultant who has been heavily involved in the campaign to the free the men has set-up a JustGiving page to throw a big party for them.
To make a donation to Jordan Wylie’s page, go to www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/chennai6needapint
Lisa said: “Jordan has already done so much to help us and his JustGiving page is a fantastic idea.
“It’s going to be one hell of a party.”