A SWINDON man imprisoned in The Philippines for six years for a crime he says he didn’t commit has set up a parliamentary petition to appeal for his release.

Kevin Taylor and his Filipino wife Charlene were jailed for 12 years in 2014 for running an alleged employment scam, they had already spent five years on remand.

Now, the father-of-three from Stratton has written to The Adver from his cell in the medium security prison, Camp Sampaguita, appealing for renewed support to secure his release.

He wrote: “Charlene and I are still in prison and have barely seen our children since 2009. I am almost blind due to malnourishment but I’m hoping for early release on clemency grounds.

“The situation is very tense here at the moment due to over the top searches by guards and it’s affecting everyone.

“They removed all my friends’ names from the visitors list when I was moved to this prison so nobody can come to see me.

“Even the consulate can’t help me.”

He has set up a petition through the parliamentary petition service which is awaiting approval, if he succeeds in getting 10,000 signatures in support of his cause the government will be obliged to provide a response.

Following a visit to The Philippines by Pope Francis in January last year, President Benigno Aquino pledged to pardon 200 prisoners. Kevin has applied to be among them but has so far heard nothing.

He wrote that he now fears the pardons may never happen: “In six years in office he has only ever let two people out and they were over 75.”

Kevin’s ordeal has been particularly hard on his retired parents Gerald and Mary, they have not seen their son since 2008 and have spent all of their money trying to help him.

They are equally frustrated about the lack of progress with the promised pardons.

Gerald said: “The paperwork is in the system but it’s so long winded it’s unbelievable.

“My wife and I are still very down about it after six and a half years.”

Such is the lack of clarity with the judicial process in The Philippines that even the precise length of the sentence remains unclear.

Gerald added: “We’re not even sure of the exact details, it could be six years, it could be twelve, it could be eighteen. They could turn round in two years and tell Kevin he has to do another six years.”

Kevin and his parents have both appealed to their MP Justin Tomlinson and to the Foreign Office for help but they say they have been met by the same response each time.

“They help to an extent but it’s always the same old answer, we can’t intervene,” explained Gerald.

In a sign that his hopes of early release may be waning, Kevin is focusing a lot of his attention on figuring out what will happen to his family when he is free.

He wrote: “If we’re released, our heartaches will not end. I will be deported and unable to return, while under UK law I’ll be restricted from bringing my family to the UK.

“My only hope of ever seeing Charlene and my daughters again is for the UK government to waive their current restrictions and allow them entry to the UK on humanitarian grounds.”