Human trafficking sentence more than doubled by Dubai court

DUBAI // A man jailed for trafficking two teenage girls and forcing them to work as prostitutes has had his three-year prison sentence more than doubled by the Dubai Court of Appeal. Bangladeshi M M, 40, and his wife M A, 30, were charged with human trafficking compatriots S A S, 16, and S J […]

DUBAI // A man jailed for trafficking two teenage girls and forcing them to work as prostitutes has had his three-year prison sentence more than doubled by the Dubai Court of Appeal.

Bangladeshi M M, 40, and his wife M A, 30, were charged with human trafficking compatriots S A S, 16, and S J S, 15, between April 24 and May 6 last year. The couple denied the charge in both the criminal and appeals courts.

M M also denied an additional charge of facilitating prostitution for a number of unidentified women.

In an earlier hearing the court was told that the two victims were promised work at beauty salons in Dubai, but when they arrived in the country they were locked up, beaten, threatened and forced to work as prostitutes.

“They took my passport then M A told me that I won’t be working in a salon but in prostitution, so I refused but then her husband assaulted me and threatened to lock me up for 10 years if I didn’t,” said S A S.

She said she was first taken to a flat run by a Chinese Madam where she had to sleep with men. She was then moved to another flat and was again forced to sell her body for two days before she was moved to a third apartment.

“I worked in the last flat for one day then I started looking for the key to the locked door. When I found it I ran out and screamed for a taxi. The driver was Bangladeshi so I told him what was happening and asked him to take me to police, which he did,” said the victim.

S J S told prosecutors she was beaten and locked up in a room for several days because she refused to work as a prostitute. After being moved between several flats she managed to find a phone and call police.

Police arrested M M and M A and referred the victims to the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children.

Records show that both girls had to borrow money to pay for visas and plane tickets to the UAE.

“S A S reported the incident at Al Qusais police station on May 24 last year, and on June 9 the same year S J S reported the couple to Al Muraqqabat police station after which we arrested the husband and his wife who denied human trafficking,” said 23-year-old policeman H A.

M M will be deported after serving his jail term, which was increased to seven years by the appeals court. His wife was previously acquitted of the human trafficking charge.

salamir@thenational.ae

Source: uae news

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