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Maid cleared of vilifying Islam and insulting Quran

Court rejects prosecutors’ appeal to punish woman, who was acquitted over uncorroborated evidence

Gulf News

Dubai

Prosecutors have lost their appeal against a housemaid, who was cleared of insulting the Quran by placing a copy of the holy book on the floor and sitting on it.

The sponsor had asked her 36-year-old Indonesian maid to clean the residence while she was out of the house in August.

When the sponsor returned home, she asked the maid if she had cleaned the place, but did not believe her when she said yes.

The sponsor and the maid engaged in a heated argument before she asked the Indonesian to place her hand on the Quran and swear that she had cleaned the house.

According to records, it was alleged that the maid brought a copy of the Quran, put it on the floor and sat on it.

The sponsor complained to the police alleging that her maid had insulted the Quran.

In October, the Dubai Court of First Instance acquitted the Indonesian suspect of vilifying Islam and insulting the Quran.

Prosecutors appealed the primary judgement and asked the Appeal Court to overturn the woman’s acquittal and have her jailed.

Citing lack of corroborated evidence, presiding judge Eisa Al Sharif rejected prosecutors’ appeal and upheld the Indonesian’s acquittal.

The maid argued in court that she sat on the copy of Quran in order to swear so that the sponsor believed that she had not been lying.

When asked if sitting on the holy book was the common practice to swear on the Quran in her hometown, the maid said she herself was a Muslim and did not intend to insult Islam or the Quran.

A police corporal claimed to prosecutors that the maid accompanied her sponsor when the latter came at the police station to report the matter.

“The sponsor claimed that when she didn’t believe that the maid had cleaned the house, she asked her to swear on the Quran. Thereafter, the maid brought the holy book, put it on the floor and sat on it … then she told the maid that she was practising some sort of magic, which the suspect denied doing,” he told prosecutors.

The appellate ruling remains subject to appeal before the Cassation Court within 26 days.

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