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Michaella McCollum: I potentially could have hurt a lot of people

Michaella McCollum has broken her recent silence after returning home to Ireland from prison in Peru last year.

The 24-year-old model, from Dungannon in Co Tyrone, was jailed in south America in 2013 after she was caught with a pal concealing cocaine worth more than €1.5m in their luggage.

Now back at home, she posted a message on Facebook thanking "everyone who has supported myself and family through these past few years".

"It has been a long ride to get where i am today," she wrote, adding: "but it just shows that when we fight hard enough for something we can achive [sic] it. Something to have in mind When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.

"Have a great weekend everyone. Lots of love."

McCollum and Scottish woman Melissa Reid were arrested in August 2013 at Lima Airport with 11KG of cocaine hidden in food packets.

She said: “I made a decision in a moment of madness….I’m not a bad person.. I want to demonstrate that I’m a good person.

“I potentially could have hurt a lot of people. I potentially could have filled Europe full of a lot of drugs,” she said.

She had been staying in Peru awaiting a judicial hearing to decide when she could return home. She arrived back in Ireland in August of last year.

Melissa Reid arrived back to Scotland in June. The pair were dubbed the 'Peru Two'.

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