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Confessions of an Innocent Man (2007)

The shocking, heart-wrenching story of British-Canadian engineer William Sampson who lived a privileged life in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia until he was kidnapped, locked up and tortured by Saudi thugs for almost three years.


David Paperny


Ian Gill (narration written by), David Paperny (narration written by) | 1 more credit »
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
William Sampson William Sampson ... Self - Saudi Detainee
James Sampson James Sampson ... Self - William Sampson's Father
Ali Al Ahmed Ali Al Ahmed ... Self - Saudi Scholar and Critic
Les Walker Les Walker ... Self - Saudi Detainee
Raf Schyvens Raf Schyvens ... Self - Saudi Detainee
Sandy Mitchell Sandy Mitchell ... Self - Saudi Detainee
Henry Garfield Pardy Henry Garfield Pardy ... Self - Director General of Consular Affairs for Canada 1992-2003 (as Gar Pardy)
Paul Kelso ... Self - Reporter for the Guardian Newspaper
Margaret Dunn Margaret Dunn ... Self - Sandy Mitchell's Sister
Francine Dubé Kopun Francine Dubé Kopun ... Self - Reporter for the National Post
Sheikh Salah Al-Hejailan Sheikh Salah Al-Hejailan ... Self - Saudi Lawyer
Bill Graham Bill Graham ... Self - Minister of Foreign Affairs Canada 2002-2004
Steve Crawshaw Steve Crawshaw ... Self - Human Rights Watch
Stéphane Bergeron Stéphane Bergeron ... Self - Bloc Québecois MP 1993-2005
Don Boudria Don Boudria ... Self - Government House Leader Canada 1997-2002


In the early 2000s, British-Canadian William Sampson, who was living and working in Saudi Arabia at the time, spent thirty-two months in Saudi captivity charged and convicted for a series of crimes, initially only a car bombing but later more serious crimes such as espionage, none of which he committed. He was one of four foreign detainees, all friends of his, for such crimes at that time. This account of the lead up to his arrest, his captivity, and his life following his release, is told largely by Sampson himself, but also by others who were involved in different aspects of his case and situation. A bit of his personal life is told in providing background as to his nature as a person, which was by no means as of saint. Speculation of why he and his fellow detainees were used as scapegoats is discussed, as well as the conditions for his ultimate release. But it is primarily the abuse and torture he endured, which included rape and being held largely in solitary confinement, and the ... Written by Huggo

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Not the most shocking
5 May 2009 | by paulgeafSee all my reviews

..documentary I've watched, which isn't to say that I was wanting it to be shocking; I just expected it to be after reading about the subject matter and the torture etc. I am glad to say it was much more than that and was done really well.

The story is of a guy who is taken hostage by Saudi Arabia and, as you will learn, is completely innocent of any crimes and, is tortured so much that he kind of retreats into a place, mentally, where he can at least feel a sense of control and cling on to the part of himself that makes him human.

Almost like going into madness, he ends up in a very strange place that none of us, hopefully, would ever have to put ourselves.

They really took away all of what made him human up til' then with the absolute brutality of the practises they subjected him to over and over. You get a lot of talking head shots of the guy as he is after he went home and you can see it in his eyes...he still suffers to even talk about it. The film is made of reconstructions and a lot of talking heads, he was captive with some others at the time and so they tell their story too.

This is a very good film and I recommend it.

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Release Date:

3 November 2007 (Canada) See more »

Also Known As:

Les aveux d'un innocent See more »

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