courts

5-year sentence for trafficking teenager to Dubai upheld

15-year-old girl brought to Dubai using forged passport

17:36 September 7, 2017

Dubai: The Dubai Court of Appeal on Thursday upheld the five-year sentence awarded to a man who trafficked a 15-year-old girl to Dubai to work as prostitute.

During interrogation, the girl claimed that she had been desperate for money as her father required a life-saving surgery. Her cousin who lives in Dubai had advised her to come and work in the country to make money.

Dubai Police received information about an Indian man offering the teenager for sex to prospective customers. The pair was arrested on July 1, last year at a hotel room in Naif, after a policeman posing as a customer, exposed them.

The 36-year-old Indian denied charges of human trafficking and running a brothel. He was however sentenced to five years in jail to be followed by deportation by the First Instance Court. He appealed the verdict, but his bid was rejected.

According to official records, the Pakistani teenager said her mother was dead and her father needed open-heart surgery which cost Dh70,000. Her cousin had negotiated with the defendant and another man, who is at large, to forge a passport stating her age to be 23, instead of 15.

When she was brought to Dubai last January, she had been told that she would work as a waitress. However, she’d been forced to become a sex worker to make more money.

She said her cousin had been assisting the defendant and another man who were running the brothel.

During questioning, the Indian defendant confessed to luring the girl to the UAE but said he didn’t know she was 15-year-old and that the cousin, who is absconding, was the one behind the trafficking.