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Frenchman sentenced to two years in Dubai jail for spitting on Quran, assaulting woman

Defendant pleaded not guilty, to be deported after serving prison sentence

Gulf News

Dubai: A French businessman has been sentenced to two years in jail for spitting on the Quran and assaulting a woman after she refused to marry him.

The Dubai Court of First Instance convicted 41-year-old R.J., of spitting on the holy book and insulting Islam by also throwing on the floor a book that contained Hadith, sayings of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).

He was also convicted of attacking the new convert, a 36-year-old British woman, S.M, in her bedroom, beating and then threatening to kill her if she refused to marry him.

“The accused will be deported following the completion of his jail term,” said Presiding Judge Mohammad Jamal upon pronouncing Sunday’s judgment.

The Frenchman entered a not guilty plea when he first appeared in court.

Court records said the British woman claimed R.J. forced his way into her room, according to her statement, when she opened the door to check on some brown-coloured water leakage that she found in her residence at Dubai Motor City.

“He pushed me down to the floor, locked the door and hid the key in his pocket. He yelled at me saying that I had to listen to him. He asked me why I posted a sign that states ‘In the Name of Allah’.

“He asked me ‘why do you keep the Quran and book of Hadith in your place? Do you want to become a Muslim?’ Then he spit on the Quran and threw the book on the floor,” S.M. testified.

R.J. repeatedly insulted Islam and the prophets before the woman told him that she was taking lessons about Islam, according to her statement.

“He locked me in for nearly four hours during which he repeatedly assaulted me,” S.M. claimed to prosecutors.

Records said he threatened to kill her and harm her family if she refused to marry him. During the time which he spent at her residence, he repeatedly told her he loved her and wanted her to marry him.

According to the accusation sheet, prosecutors charged R.J. with trespassing into S.M.’s home, threatening to kill her, assaulting and locking her up. He was also accused of offending Islam and the Quran.

Records said the woman’s Saudi friend took her to police to report the incident.

The Saudi friend discovered what happened when he went to check on her because she had failed to answer his calls for a day.

He also assisted the police in arresting the defendant.

Sunday’s judgment remains subject to appeal within 15 days.