Crime and Courts

Teen girl forced into prostitution by Dubai expats, freed in police raid

Filed on November 26, 2019

(Reuters file)

They had lured her with an offer to work at a beauty salon.

The Dubai Police freed a 16-year-old girl from a prostitution ring following a raid on a flat, the Court of First Instance heard.

Three Bangladeshi men have been charged with human trafficking after they brought the underage girl from their home country and forced her into prostitution.

The court heard how the three men, aged between 24 and 31, had brought the victim with a passport in which they falsified details related to her age. They had lured her with an offer to work at a beauty salon. However, the defendants seized her passport and travel ticket upon her arrival in Sharjah and then made her work as a prostitute at several flats.

They had accomplices at large.

The main defendant, a 24-year-old, is also accused of raping the girl. The two co-accused have also been charged with running a flat in Al Karama as a prostitution den.

The case dates back to and before September 15. It was filed at Al Rafaa police station.

During public prosecution investigation, the victim recounted how she was offered a job at a beauty salon by her mother's friend back home. "However, when I was picked up from Sharjah airport and taken to a flat, a woman there told me that my mother's friend had lied to me and that I was brought to work in prostitution."

She said that the main defendant would not let her go back to her country before she paid him the costs for visa and ticket. He made her work as a prostitute for some time during which she fell sick. "At some point, I managed to call the police and sought help."

The police raided the flat shortly later and freed the victim.

A police lieutenant said they raided the flat after locating it. "We learned it was in Al Karama. We raided it after getting a prosecution warrant. We arrested three men and some women who were working willingly in the flesh trade."

The victim was sent to the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children.

The trial has been adjourned to December 15.

Marie Nammour

Originally from Lebanon, Marie has been covering the Dubai Courts and the Public Prosecution, immigration and labour issues often, and the Dubai International Film Festival. A graduate from the Holy Spirit University of Kaslik, Jounieh, a city to the north of Beirut, she worked as an in-house reporter of international affairs at a leading TV station back home and a legal translator for a renowned law academy in the Lebanese capital. Speaks fluently four languages and is fond of travelling, psychology, learning more, and has grown by now a rich ‘criminal’ imagination...

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