Contact: Paul Ciceri

New book details life for an American imprisoned for 33 months in the Middle East

This timely and chilling story provides a seldom-seen look from the inside. Paul’s story, culled from notes smuggled out of prison and from letters to friends and family, provides a truly factual account of the happenings in Al Wathba, one of the most notorious Middle East prisons.

A carefree holiday in Greece in the fall of 1998 turned into a nightmare when immigration authorities in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates discovered a small amount of cocaine unknowingly stashed in Paul Ciceri’s backpack. The authorities had been forewarned by the traveling companion Paul had considered a friend. While in Athens they had verbal altercations when the friend professed that Americans were war-mongering imperialists. Previously good-natured, he had apparently become inflamed after the United States retaliated for the bombings of its Embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salem and hid the cocaine in Paul’s backpack.

Paul’s story, sometimes shocking, sometimes disturbing, often revealing, but always inspirational, puts the readers inside the walls of Al Wathba. A deep faith in God, the support of family and friends, the ongoing efforts of American Embassy staff to secure his release, and a strong will to survive helped Paul through his 1001-day struggle. Truly an inspiration to everyone who has faced adversity, Paul continued to thank God for his many blessings, even as he was subjected to cruelty and unfairness. The next 33 months are detailed in Paul’s new book “You Have No Rights Here“

Information about his book can be found at

In the meantime Paul continues to savor every moment of his freedom knowing what having one’s rights taken away in an unfriendly foreign land means. Ciceri states, “Travel to and employment in foreign lands carry with them inherent dangers that Americans need to be better educated to identify and be wary of to ensure that their safety is protected. With the revelations of Americans’ treatment of Iraqi prisoners at Al Ghraib prison and the subsequent elevated hatred of Americans it is more important than ever to be judicious in choosing places to visit. My book will help people to wake up to the realities of the dangers that can befall them. I dread to think of what would happen to me if I was still in Al Wathba prison.”

Author Bio: Prior to moving to Kuwait from Orlando, Florida in 1997 to work for ELS Language Centers Paul Ciceri held positions with IBM Canada, Prudential Securities, and PaineWebber. In addition he owned his own personal training and massage business. At the time of his arrest he was Director of Marketing for ELS Language Centers for the Middle East and North Africa. He has authored five books for IBM and Construction Tips for New Home Builders and Creating a Successful Massage Practice. Paul holds degrees in Applied Mathematics and Financial Consulting.

--- 30 ---

Return to Welcome Page