Abu Dhabi: Lured by sweet words and false promises, Saudi security forces say online predators are sexually abusing minor girls but the police are chasing these individuals to protect teenagers from their evil ways.
Police are also calling on parents to educate minors in sexual harassment which includes any unwanted conduct of a sexual nature which has the purpose or effect of violating someone’s dignity, or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for them.
“Sexual harassment covers indecent or suggestive remarks, unwanted touching, requests or demands for sex and the dissemination of pornography,” the police said.
Last week, Saudi police caught two predators - one in Riyadh and another in Jeddah - in separate sting operations.
In the first incident, a Yemeni man in his 20s was arrested by the Jeddah police for luring minors for sexual exploitation, police said.
The man allegedly attempted to seduce children into sexual conduct by sending them pornographic material through social media, police said.
The accused had filmed indecent images of minors and blackmailed them. He used his account on the “tik-tok” platform to target and exploit teenagers, using his skills to imitate voices and singing. He posed as several Arab nationalities during his appearance in the videos with the aim of misleading, and then he deleted his account in an attempt to escape with his act.
He was caught and referred to the Public Prosecutor for reinvestigation, pending trial.
In the second incident, the Riyadh police arrested a man in his 30s for luring, filming indecent images of minors and blackmailing them.
He was referred to the Public Prosecution pending trial, the police said.
According to Saudi law, luring a minor, aged under 18 years, by an adult who is 21 years or older, is a criminal offence. Since luring a minor by an adult is usually for the purpose of sexual gratification, this is considered a sexual crime.
Sending pornographic material or making indecent propositions to a minor is a crime in Saudi Arabia.
The penal code applies to material sent or shared using electronic means, such as the internet, or in person.
Offenders face a jail term of up to five years and a fine of SR three million or approximately ($800,000).
“Usually, an officer contacts a suspect through online chat and engages him in a conversation that is of sexual nature. The officer then asks for a photo, to be sent through email, and also sends a photo of a girl, of course fake, to the suspect,” a source said.
At that point, the officer attempts to set up a face-to-face meeting somewhere. Once the suspect arrives, undercover officers arrest him.