It was reported that the court of appeals in Makkah has upheld a verdict and the subsequent sentencing which had been issued by the Taif summary court. The court sentenced a Saudi man to six years behind bars and an additional 150 lashes for the crime of blackmailing an innocent young woman. In accordance with the report made by the Al Watan daily newspaper on Wednesday, the convicted man picked up the young woman before driving her over to an apartment building located in Taif, once in the apartment the convicted man then proceeded to physically assault the young woman, which then turned into a sexual assault.
After the assault the convicted man forcefully snatched the mobile phone from the young female victim and proceeded to take her pictures with the phone. Almost a year later the same man once again started contacting the woman stating that if she did not do exactly as he desired, he would upload the explicit photographs on the internet and make it visible to the entire world. An anonymous source at the court stated that the sentencing and verdict in question was by far the longest sentence that the court had issued to a blackmailer. The source further added that the young female victim pleaded to the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice or known as HAIA to get her out of this situation. She clearly told the commission that the man had previously sexually assaulted her and was now blackmailing her to do as he says or he would publish the photographs.
The source further stated that the young woman initially decided to confront the man herself by not giving into his demands, but the blackmailer sent her photos to her fiancé which caused some major differences between the two. The members of HAIA proceeded to catch the blackmailer in a sting operation however he managed to escape. HAIA members then chose to inform the blackmailer’s father about the activities and actions of his son and also asked him to bring his son over to their office with the mobile phone that he had stolen from the woman.
When the blackmailer brought in the phone, HAIA members found all the pictures to have been erased and the chip removed. The young man then proceeded to deny all the charges put against him by the woman and stated that he was the real victim here. He however did admit to taking the mobile phone from the woman so that she would finally stop chasing him.
The judge heard both sides of the story and seemed convinced that the man was guilty of blackmailing the woman and hence he was sentenced. Personally I believe that if the man was found guilty of blackmailing then shouldn’t there be a sexual assault case on him as well. A sexual assault case can get him a much longer time behind bars than just 6 years. That however is an entire topic altogether.
Source: Saudi Gazette
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