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30 May 2023

Man forced compatriot into prostitution

By Eman Al Baik

A jobless Bangladeshi allegedly kidnapped a compatriot worker, confined her and forced her into prostitution, the Dubai Criminal Court heard.

MHM, 26, is also accused of having sex with the victim against her will, threatening her with killing, stealing her golden necklace and selling her for Dh20,000.

Chief Prosecutor Mohammed Yousuf asked the court to give stiff penalty against the accused.

The victim identified as LAM, 25, Bangladeshi, testified that in December she went with her friend to Bur Dubai from Jebel Ali and then stopped at the Bur Dubai bus station to buy some stuff from shops.

“We did some shopping and then went to gold market in Deira to buy gold. I also wanted to withdraw money from ATM machine but didn’t how to use ATM card. I asked a passerby to withdraw money for her using the card… but he was also unaware of how to use it. He gave the card to another person who withdrew Dh1,000… he chatted with me and told me that she looks like his sister; then we also exchanged contact numbers there.

“Then we went to gold souk. I bought a necklace for Dh2,500 from there and then went back to Jebel Ali. I talked to the man on phone for two days. On the third day, I went to Bur Dubai to meet a woman whom I had lent some money. She asked me to wait for her at the bus station. As I arrived there, she called me and apologised saying she cannot,” she told the court.

She said, coincidently, the accused was also there at the bus station at that time… so she told him the whole story.

“Then I took a taxi to go back which was parked near the accused and asked the driver to drop me to Jebel Ali… But the accused also squeezed into the car… I asked the driver to get the accused off the car but he did not listen and drove away… I started screaming and crying and threatened to inform the police, but he did not listen. I got fainted in the car and woke up in a house where there was a compatriot woman… I asked her how I came here… but she asked me to keep mum,” LAM testified before the court on Thursday.

According to the victim, the accused also asked her to have sex with him but she refused and resisted his attempt successfully. She also accused MHM of stealing her necklace, earrings, bank card and confining her in the room till police came the next day.

Since the victim was absent from her work without notification, her employer informed the police and her co-worker Halima, who had accompanied her for the shopping to Bur Dubai, the court records showed.

Halima told police that the man who helped the victim withdrew money also promised her to find her a better job. “On Monday, she went out but did not come back and her mobile was switched off,” Halima testified.

Two months later, police received a tip-off about the victim confined in a villa. The force raided the villa in Al Hamriya area and found the victim along with other women in the flat. The accused confessed to confining the victim and forcing her into prostitution and stealing Dh1,700 from her account in addition to the golden necklace, testified a police officer.

But the accused denied charges before the court. The case is adjourned till March 12.