A leading Hong Kong businessman has come to the aid of an Australian woman jailed in the city who was denied the chance to return home under a prisoner exchange scheme because of lack of funds. Bruce Rockowitz, president of Li & Fung (Trading), donated about A$9,000 (HK$65,700) yesterday to Rachel Diaz's family in Sydney after reading of the young woman's plight. Diaz, 21, was sentenced two years ago to more than 10 years' in jail after she was caught in a Hong Kong hotel room in 2004 preparing heroin to smuggle to Australia. At her trial, prosecutors said the hairdresser, then aged 17, and two accomplices were intending to swallow the drugs in 114 condoms. Diaz was recently granted approval to serve the rest of her sentence in Sydney, under the terms of a prisoner exchange scheme agreed upon between Hong Kong and Australia last year. But her family did not have the A$10,000 needed to pay the air fare for Diaz and an escort officer. A campaign by the Foreign Prisoners Support Service had raised only A$1,000 until Mr Rockowitz intervened. Last night Kay Danes, the service's family advocate, described the donation as 'incredibly generous' and said Mr Rockowitz 'may just have saved a young girl's life'. She said fears had been growing for Diaz's emotional well-being. 'Rachel is not handling things very well ... her plight has become quite critical,' she said. Last night Rachel's father, Ferdinand - who has not had enough money to visit his daughter - was said to be overjoyed. He insisted that Diaz was not a hardened criminal. A spokeswoman for Canadian-born Mr Rockowitz said he had felt really sorry for Diaz and her family.