Injustice to Women in Saudi Arabia: gang-raped girl is punished by Saudi gov't

General Topics: 

The Historical Judgment in Saudi Arab: A 19-year-old girl who was gang raped 18 times by 7 people was sentenced to 90 lashes.  However after the appeal for leniency, her punishment was increased to 200 lashes and 6 months jail term.  Reason: Her lawyer informed the media about this case and it embarrassed the Saudi Government

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Surprised...?  Please don't be.  This is the legal system of KSA, a country which is meant to illustrate the picture of True Islamic justice, culture and civilization.  It has brought nothing but world-famed shame and criticism for us as Muslims.  Here is the detailed Incident through Authentic resources like Fox news, Arab news, Gulf news and Saudi Gazette. [This posting moved from the forum where it was originally posted.]

Oct 2006: The story started with the persistent threatening phone calls of a high school boy, who used to be her friend but as soon her parents chose a husband for her, she broke all the contacts to him.  In a couple of months the man demanded her picture, threatening her with tape recordings of conversations the two had had.  Feeling trapped, she sent him a photograph.  [Big mistake]  One day she called the blackmailer and demanded her picture back.  He finally agreed but asked her to meet him in a shopping mall parking lot. According to her, “I knew I was taking a risk but I had to do it so that I could start my marriage with a clean slate.”  [Fair enough but bigger mistake].

She went to the shopping center and in the man’s car and off they went.  While she was arguing with him about the return of her photo, she noticed that they were being followed by another car.

As the girl and the man started to head back towards her house, two cars maneuvered in front of them, forcing the blackmailer to stop.  A group of men stormed out of the two cars holding large meat and kitchen knives that they used to bang on the windows. G begged the man not to open the doors, no matter what, but the man, desperate and frightened, opened the door. The gang grabbed the man and the girl, and threatened them to slice their throat.  She screamed, begged them not to harm her and pleaded for her life.

She was taken to a farm. The gang pulled her out of the car and dragged her to a small wooden hut. They then ordered the blackmailer to leave.  According to few sources he was raped by three men too but then he was showed the way out and was warned to keep his mouth shut.

From 11 P.M. to 2 A.M., she was raped 14 times by the seven men.  Through the ordeal one of the men took G’s cell phone and then took pictures of her naked body with his cell phone.  The rapist threatened to blackmail her: he would call her to meet them whenever they wished or else they would send the pictures of her to all the numbers in her cell phone.

After they were finished with her, the men told her to get dressed, but she was too traumatized to do anything. The men then dressed her, placed her in their car and drove her back home.  According to her “I walked in the house, not believing what had happened. I was stunned, shocked and traumatized, I was ashamed, scared and didn’t know how to tell anyone.  I was also worried that if I said anything the rapist would send out my naked pictures and make my life even worse than it was". [True enough]

She became quiet and depressed and isolated herself from the world, sitting in her room day after day. Her family couldn’t understand the transformation. Her fiancé noticed the change but couldn’t get through to her.  She lived in her world of shame for three weeks until the rapists starting bragging to their friends about what they had done and her fiance got to know through his friend.  After confronting her with this story, the fiancé was enraged and got insane but then he calmed down and made a decision to stand by her all the way despite his family and friends telling him to leave the girl.  The courageous boy decided to unite and work together to make sure the criminals were brought to justice. [How foolish he was to expect this from Saudi legal system]

Now Imagine this: rather then comforting and supporting his sister, a younger brother was so enraged by the rape that he beat her and tried to attack her with a knife.  After that incident, G was sent to her uncle’s house to live.
 

Hearing of the case:

Qasim is a small town, so from her description of the men her fiancé was able to name the rapist. The victim’s fiancé went to the local police and filed a complaint. Five of the rapists were arrested: singles in their 20s.  Among the rapists were a wanted child molester and drug addicts.  Five men confessed to the crime, bragging of what they did in the police station, but then withdrew their confession in court

There were only two court hearings, one to present the case and the other to declare the verdict.

During her Questioning, the victim was only asked three questions during the hearings, none of them concerning the rape charges.  Since was so scared and confused about the dates, the judge found her a liar and treated as if she was guilty.

During the second hearing the three judges handed down sentences ranging from 10 months to five years in prison to the rapists while sentencing the victim and the original blackmailer to 90 lashes for being together in car ("khalwah").

According to the girl, "I was shocked at the verdict. I couldn’t believe my ears. Ninety lashes, 90 lashes!!  I know it was wrong for me to be in the car with that man. I admit I was stupid, but I was only trying to restore my honor and get my picture back.  What happened to me that night makes up for all the punishment a girl should get. What happened to me is more than any one could handle.” 

In two months, one of the rapists will be freed from prison after serving his 10-month sentence

The most Shocking Part:

The Ministry statement used the term "The woman and her male friend" throughout the case.  A rape conviction carries the death penalty in Saudi Arabia, but the court did not impose it due to the "lack of witnesses" and the "absence of confessions," although the testimony of that girl should have been sufficient for the case.

The Higher Judicial Council granted a retrial but, on November 14 2007, a court toughened her sentence to six months in jail and 200 lashes. The judges decided to punish the woman further for "her attempt to aggravate and influence the judiciary through the media."  The men were initially sentenced to one to five years in jail, but those terms were also toughened last week to between two and nine years.

The Justice Ministry implied the victim's sentence was increased because she had spoken out to the press. "For whoever has an objection on verdicts issued, the system allows to appeal without resorting to the media," said the statement carried on the official Saudi Press Agency.  The court's "argument was that it was the girl's fault in the first place that (the rape) happened and none of that would have happened if she had not met up with the non-related male friend."

Yes, Gang-Raped victim herself sentenced to six months in jail and 200 lashes.  Means when she got raped, she had no right to show the actual face of the Saudi Law Courts. I myself am Muslim ALHamdulliah.  However, I fully condemn this horrible incident and feel bad for that girl and don't feel secure in this country anymore. God Bless on Muslims.