Court upholds cross-dresser student’s reduced jail term

DUBAI — The Dubai Court of Cassation upheld recently a one-year jail term awarded by the appellate court to a male student for indulging in prostitution and cross-dressing.

By Mary Nammour

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Published: Mon 27 Sep 2010, 12:16 AM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 4:43 PM

The Court of Appeal had reduced the three-year jail term given to the 22-year-old Emirati student by a lower court to one year on the same charges in July. The Cassation Court, however, upheld other aspects of the lower court’s verdict.

The student, known as ‘Hamdan British’ in his Internet profile, has been in jail since his arrest on July 20 last year.

Earlier, a lawyer representing the student, argued in the Court of Appeal that the arrest of his client and the search procedures were invalid.

Counsel Jassem Naqbi presented his arguments for the second time on behalf of the student after the Court of Appeal ordered a retrial.

Naqbi told the court that the arrest was made without a warrant from the Public Prosecution which made it legally null.

The student was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for indulging in prostitution and cross-dressingby the Court of First Instance in March. Another Emirati defendant in the same case was sentenced to six months in jail by the Court of Misdemeanours on the charge of having sex with his accomplice.

The student was also accused of producing and spreading materials objectionable to public decency throughthe Internet.

The student had earlier pleaded not guilty to prostitution, as well as to having consensual sex with another Emirati male (the one referred to the Court of Misdemeanours).

The court ordered confiscation of the laptop he was using to spread indecent material.

It also dismissed the civil case filed by the student.

In the arraignment sheet, the prosecution accused him of posting on the Internet pictures showing him dressing up as a woman with make-up and accessories and wearing women’s underwear and swimsuits, and inseductive poses.

He pleaded not guilty to causing harm to Islamic faith by posting a picture of him online posing as a woman in hijab while wearing make-up and sitting before the Holy Quran pretending to cite verses. —

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