Peru drugs mule Michaella McCollum thanks everyone 'who had her back' while in jail
Convicted drug smuggler Michaella McCollum has thanked her supporters and everyone who "had my back" when she was in jail in South America.
In August, the Dungannon woman arrived back in Ireland after being released from prison in Peru for trying to smuggle cocaine out of the country.
The glamorous 24-year-old had spent less than three years behind bars with Scot, Melissa Reid (22).
The pair, known as the Peru Two, were arrested in August 2013 at Lima airport after they were found with £1.5m worth of cocaine hidden in packets of food. McCollum was ordered to spend the next six years of her sentence on parole in the city.
But after reports that she made a secret deal with Peruvian authorities, she was given permission to fly home.
She is believed to have spent her first night home last August partying and celebrating her release with family and friends in Co Tyrone.
Writing on Facebook at the weekend, McCollum stated: "Now that I have the chance I just want to thank everyone who has supported myself and family through these past few years.
"Please know I truly appreciate each one who cared and had my back.
"Thank you for all the sweet messages.
"I have not got reading them all just yet, or got a chance to reply to them, but I will definitely make a good attempt to get back to you all.
"It has been a long ride to get where I am today but it just shows that when we fight hard enough for something we can achieve 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 posted a photograph of herself alongside the message.
The image shows the pouting former model's trademark dark hair once worn in a bun has been ditched for long blonde hair and heavy make-up.