Nick Dunn arrives home

Former British soldier Nick Dunn - one of the so-called Chennai Six – has touched down on UK soil.

His arrival at Newcastle airport this morning comes more than four years after he was jailed in India on weapons charges.

It follows the arrival of Billy Irving on Wednesday, who was the first of the Chennai Six to land back in the UK when he arrived at Glasgow Airport.

After being greeted by family he spoke briefly to reporters, saying:

"It feels excellent to be home."

Mr Dunn and Mr Irving, along with four other British men, had been guards on a ship to combat piracy in the Indian Ocean, but were jailed in October 2013 after being charged with carrying unlicensed firearms and ammunition.

Chennai 6 Nick Dunn arrives home

After years of campaigning, they won an appeal against their convictions last week and were given permission to leave India.

The other men - John Armstrong, Nicholas Simpson, Ray Tindall and Paul Towers – are also expected to arrive today.

Mr Dunn said getting back to see his mother Margaret had been his priority, and she was at the airport along with his sister Lisa, brother Paul and father Jim.

"Seeing them felt amazing, it felt like my heart had melted," he said.

"So much is down to my amazing sister. She kept me going for four years, writing in her letters keep going, keep going, keep going.

Chennai 6

"It's four Christmases rolled into one, I have missed four of them so I am going to have the best Christmas ever.

"I would always visualise walking through those doors but today is nothing like that at all. I'm just overwhelmed, ecstatic, I'm the happiest man alive."

Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said of the men’s release

 "It is wonderful news that the men are returning to the UK […]

"I pay tribute to those who have campaigned for the men, who will be delighted to see them return home after being separated for so long."

Chennai 6 Nick Dunn arrives home

Topics: