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Dubai worker accused of raping woman at knifepoint

Woman claimed she was raped in bedroom

Gulf News

Dubai: A worker has been accused of raping a fellow countrywoman at knifepoint on the same day she arrived in Dubai to work as a hairdresser.

The 45-year-old worker, J.A., was said have picked up his fellow countrywoman from Abu Dhabi International Airport before taking her to a flat in Dubai where he left her alone.

J.A., who was under the influence of liquor, was said to have returned later to the flat and raped the woman at knifepoint.

“No I am not guilty. I did not pose a knife in her face and I didn’t rape her. We had consensual sex… she agreed and it was not against her will,” said the suspect when he defended himself before the Dubai Court of First Instance.

According to the charge sheet, prosecutors accused the Bangladeshi defendant of “molesting the woman and having sex with her like husbands and wives at knifepoint.”

Yet presiding judge Maher Salam Al Mahdi, when he meted out the charges against J.A., said: “The court has modified the accusation to having sex with the woman against her will after he pinned her down, immobilised her at knifepoint and had forcible sex with her.”

The defendant denied the accusation (after the charge was modified) and maintained that it was consensual.

However he confessed to consuming liquor and re-entering the country illegally without obtaining prior permission from the Interior Minister.

The woman testified that a man in her village in Bangladesh helped her get a visa to come and work as a hairdresser in Dubai.

“The man told me to communicate with his relative, who turned out to be J.A. The latter picked me up from Abu Dhabi and took me to the flat in Dubai. He kept me there and left. I was sleeping in the bed and suddenly woke up to someone touching my body. When I woke up, I realised that it was J.A. groping my body and he was drunk. I refused his sexual advances when he asked to have sex with me. When I turned him down, he went to the kitchen and dragged a knife. Then he threatened me with the knife and asked me to have sex with him… I was very frightened. I was coerced to surrender myself to him. He had sex with me and then went to sleep. I also slept, but when I woke up in the morning, I ran out to the balcony and cried for help,” said the woman.

Prosecution records said the building’s watchman ran up to the flat and opened the doors. Police raided the flat and arrested the suspect.

The court will appoint a lawyer to defend the suspect when it reconvenes on February 17.