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Woman raped and jailed in UAE sues

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout: Debate & Discussion' started by AroundTheWorld, Mar 30, 2011.

  1. AroundTheWorld

    Supporting Member

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    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/03/29/3176901.htm

    Brisbane rape victim sues UAE luxury hotel


    A Brisbane woman is suing a five-star hotel in the United Arab Emirates after she was drugged and raped by co-workers and jailed for eight months.

    In a landmark case, Alicia Gali, 29, is seeking compensation from her former employer, Le Meridien Al Aqah Beach Resort, for breaching its workplace duty of care.

    In June 2008 Ms Gali had her drink spiked and was raped by up to four co-workers while working as a beauty salon manager at the international resort.

    When she reported the assault to authorities she was jailed on an adultery charge and spent eight months in prison because it is illegal in the UAE to have sex outside marriage.

    Australian embassy staff advised Ms Gali and her family not to go to the media during her time in custody, when she was locked in a cell with 30 other women.

    She was pardoned and released in March 2009.

    Ms Gali alleges the hotel failed to protect staff against assault and its legal consequences.

    She says the resort encouraged workers to drink illegally at its staff bar despite strict laws and the requirement of drinking permits.

    "I thought I would be safe and protected in an international hotel group," she said in a statement.

    "They didn't give me the correct advice and didn't help me when I was charged and imprisoned."

    Ms Gali says the harrowing ordeal should be a warning to others.

    "I still feel angry and upset. It's distressing because I was a victim in all this and I was punished," she said.

    "The UAE is being promoted hugely here as a tourism destination - they sponsor things here.

    "They are not complying with human rights, women's rights and migrant workers' rights."

    Nightmare continues

    Ms Gali's lawyer Melissa Payne says her client suffers severe post traumatic stress disorder, nightmares, flash backs, depression and claustrophobia.

    Ms Payne says the incident could have been avoided.

    She says the hotel should have had segregated secure quarters for female employees and provide adequate induction training on the local laws and customs.

    "When she reported the assault to the human resources manager he did not advise her of the potential consequences of reporting that assault," she said.

    "Alicia's employer has let her down in the most terrible, terrible of ways. A company like this should know better.

    "The resort promotes itself as paradise on Earth... it wasn't paradise for Alicia."

    Ms Payne says the law firm is still preparing its case and will consult UAE legal experts, human rights and labour law experts.

    "There was never a prosecution against anyone for sexual assault or rape," she said.

    Safety

    But Trey Maurice from the international umbrella group Starwood Hotels, which owns the resort, says safety and security of staff is a paramount priority.

    Mr Maurice says the management of the resort was aware of the unfortunate circumstances and provided support and assistance to Ms Gali and her family during her imprisonment.

    Ms Payne said her client delayed the lawsuit until she had recovered psychologically.

    "She now feels brave enough to speak out," she said.

    "Alicia is very concerned there are other women who might find themselves in similar situations."

    She says it is likely the legal suit will happen in Queensland courts, but there is a possibility it could be heard in the UAE.

    "This is a complex area of law, but we are exploring all options," she said.

    She says the compensation amount has not yet been determined.
     
  2. Roxs-Redemption

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    Do you actually check Australian news sites?
     
  3. AroundTheWorld

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    No, this was posted on a frequent traveler forum I frequent.
     
  4. Mathloom

    Mathloom Contributing Member

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    Good that she's suing the hotel.

    I remember this was a popular story at the time. IIRC, there was no evidence of rape or drugs, so I'm not sure why she's bringing that up, seems like she would only hurt her case by lying. Also, I'm fairly certain the other parties would also have their visas cancelled on the spot, because it is illegal for everyone (and obviously fired).

    I'm not sure how things go if the staff acted outside the hotel policy. While the rules are quite messed up here, everyone who lives here is getting tired of hearing stories of people breaking the rules which EVERYONE knows about. It's like in other countries where someone gets busted for smoking pot and the excuse is "well everybody does it!!". It's time that people are held accountable, and I think that will ultimately put more pressure on the authorities to adjust the rules.
     
  5. AroundTheWorld

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    She should sue that ass-backwards state. She got jailed for 8 months for sex outside marriage for reporting that she was raped, for heaven's sake.

    But once again, you show your moral compass - or lack thereof.
     
  6. pippendagimp

    pippendagimp Member

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    Every Le Meridien i've ever stayed at has been terribly despicable in every facet.....damn i hate that company :eek:
     
  7. ChievousFTFace

    ChievousFTFace Contributing Member

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    She REPORTED the assault to police. If she knew about the rules, why would she report the rape? She would have just left the country and saved herself shame and jailtime.

    Was she arrested on the spot? Was she given an exam for rape? Was she given a test for any drugs in her system? How long after did she report the incident? Rape is def no laughing matter and these sort of laws are shame on human dignity.



    Is there a precedent for suing a country based on the law of their lands?
     
  8. AroundTheWorld

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    Chievous, that second quote was from me...agree with your post.

    I don't think a lawsuit had much of a chance, what I am saying is that the mentality behind that "law" is so messed up that my sense of justice says she should be allowed to sue a country that makes such crazy laws. At the end of the day, it is the same repressed sexuality, chauvinistic, anti-women mentality as in several other countries that have something in common with the UAE.

    And my opinion is that Mathloom's psycho babble shows this same mentality. "Rape? I dunno, where's the evidence? Oh, let's put her in jail, she should have known the rules." (and remember, Mathloom's post is coming from someone who works for the regulator in the UAE, in whichever branch)

    If there was supposedly no evidence, why in the world was she put in jail for 8 months? What kind of law is that? And Mathloom goes and actually has the nerve to say she broke rules that "everyone knows about".

    Unbelievable.
     
    #8 AroundTheWorld, Mar 30, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2011
  9. rhadamanthus

    rhadamanthus Contributing Member

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    This post is so full of cognitive dissonance and fails I don't know where to start. Sheesh.
     
    1 person likes this.
  10. KingCheetah

    KingCheetah Contributing Member

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    I agree - it can only be the woman's fault.
     
  11. Joshfast

    Joshfast "We're all gonna die" - Billy Sole
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    For all the grief you and your merry band of warriors give ATW, I really hope you get it for this one.
     
    #11 Joshfast, Mar 30, 2011
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2011
    1 person likes this.
  12. Depressio

    Depressio Contributing Member

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    Not all countries have women's rights?

    THIS IS RIDICULOUS.
     
  13. AroundTheWorld

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    It's not a singular case either:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/wor...oman-arrested-in-Dubai-after-being-raped.html

    British woman 'arrested in Dubai after being raped'
    A 23-year-old British woman on holiday in Dubai told police she had been raped, only to be arrested herself for having illegal sexual intercourse.


    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/8486086.stm

    "The message to women is clear: victims will be punished for speaking out and seeking justice, but sexual assault itself will not be properly investigated," Nadya Khalife of Human Rights Watch said.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...vel-advice-list-Brits-jail.html#ixzz1I5uYi5sq

    'Don't drink alcohol, have sex or even hold hands': Foreign Office advice to keep Britons out of jail in Dubai

    British tourists and expats working in Dubai have been given a 'Dos and Don'ts' list in a bid to keep them out of jail.

    The Foreign Office warns that drinking alcohol, sharing a hotel room when unmarried and even holding hands could land visitors in trouble because of strict Muslim laws.
    Britons are more likely to be arrested in the United Arab Emirates - the federation of which Dubai is a part - than anywhere else in the world.


    ----------------------------------------

    And remember...this is supposedly one of the most liberal places where Muslim law has heavily influenced the state's law.
     
  14. penda45

    penda45 Member

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    You honestly believe that the UAE is a backwards state or is this your bigotry speaking? To see these words come out of your mouth is kind of surprising because you claim to travel to the UAE and have seen the country and you still believe that it is a backwards country.

    Countries make mistakes all the time, what about the Black guy in Texas who was wrongly jailed for 30 years for rape? His innocence was proven after 30 years does that make the USA a backwards state?

    China has a law that citizens can only have one child, I don't see you posting anything about that being backwards?
     
  15. AroundTheWorld

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    Being "rich" (based heavily on debt) from oil and some tourism does not mean it is not a backwards country. It has nothing to do with alleged bigotry to think that it is unbelievable that a country has laws and judges that put a woman in jail for 8 months for reporting a rape. Or do you agree with the treatment of that woman?
     
  16. Depressio

    Depressio Contributing Member

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    That's a form of population control and has nothing to do with how socially modern China is.
     
  17. penda45

    penda45 Member

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    Did I say I agree with the treatment of the woman? If you come out of your bubble you can see that the woman was proven innocent and set free. Also they did not put her in jail because of the fact that she was raped, once again you are trying to twist the story. If you read the story you can see that she tried to report a crime, they screwed up in the investigation but eventually they got it right, I mean this kind of stuff happens on a daily basis in every country. So according to your argument all the countries are "backwards"?

    It is very common to be accused of something you did not do and be put in jail for it until you are proven innocent if you cannot make the bail. I am sure you of all people would know that.
     
  18. penda45

    penda45 Member

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    I know the reasoning behind it, I just don't find it to be right. I am Indian and I know for a fact that India has no such law.

    To be fair rural South Indians practice female infanticide, it is a heinous act that is practiced in the rural areas of South India by ALL walks of people and there needs to be a stop on that. Some believe that this idea was spurred by the politicians in order to advocate population control but I have no proof of that, it is an evil practice that needs to stop.
     
  19. AMS

    AMS Contributing Member

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    Why didn't you bother putting your 2 cents in the thread on flyertalk? Afraid to show your bigotry on that site? Afraid people will see you for who you are?
     
  20. ChievousFTFace

    ChievousFTFace Contributing Member

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    Ignore rape: check
    Dogpile on ATW: check
     

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