A Woman's Horrific Trip to Dubai: Drugged, Gang-Raped and Thrown in Jail.
Australian Woman Gang Raped in Dubai then Jailed Under Islamic Sharia Law.
Hoax or Fact:
Fact with some missing information.
The message talks about a disturbing case where an Australian woman in Dubai was Drugged, Gang Raped and then Jailed under Islamic Sharia Law. Yes, the horrifying incident is a fact with some missing information, the details of which are discussed in this article.
Alicia Gali was the 27 year old Australian woman who spent eight months in prison in the UAE on charges of having sex outside of marriage after she was gang-raped. Alicia shared her 'abandoned' painful story with Australia's Yahoo 7 News.
About the Incident
Alicia Gali was working as a beauty salon manager for an American hospitality company, Starwood Hotels, at the Meridien Al Aqah beach resort, Fujairah, UAE. She was living at the hotel. One night, in June 2008, when Alicia saw her room flooded due to a backed-up drain, she went to the hotel bar along with her laptop to have a drink. She said that a fellow employee at the hotel refilled her glass with ice from an ice bucket, using a pair of tongs, and the next thing she remembered was waking up at 4:30 p.m. the next day -- "naked, with broken ribs and massive bruising" all over her body. Maintenance employees of the hotel later found a man's shirt and a plastic bag were used to block the drain, perhaps in a ploy to force Alicia to the hotel bar.
After the incident, when Alicia Gali reported the rape to police, she was told to sign a statement in Arabic, which she later learned was actually a confession that she drank alcohol and had sex outside marriage.
Gali was prosecuted under the local laws in UAE. According to DigitalJournal.com, the co-workers denied under oath that there was any assault, and testified in court that Gali consented to have sex with them. They alleged that her injuries were caused when she fell whilst dancing on a table. Since there was no evidence to prove the rape occurred, both Alicia Gali and the three men involved were sentenced to imprisonment of 12 months for having extra-marital sexual affair. The men were expelled from their jobs. Alicia, however, was pardoned in March 2009 after serving eight months in jail.
After spending eight months in prison in UAE, Alicia returned to Australia and sued the employers at the Starwood hotel for failing to protect their workers against assault. She also criticized the Australian consular service for not helping her when she was charged and imprisoned. It was at this point that her case gained worldwide media attention. However, both Starwood hotel and Australian embassy responded saying they did their due. The two videos shown in this article show the documentary film 'Abandoned' published in Yahoo News Australia, which explains the horrifying case of Australian woman Alicia Gali in UAE.
The unforeseen events in Alicia's life in 2008 continue to affect her life. Reportedly, she was later diagnosed with severe post traumatic stress disorder; unable to work, and even had to borrow money from friends and family to pay for her hospital and counseling.
Strict Laws in UAE
Under Islamic law, in absence of physical evidence, rape can only be proven if the rapist confesses or if there are four male witnesses. UAE has laws that allow prison sentences for crimes including drinking alcohol in public and having sex outside marriage. Unfortunately, Gali is not the first woman being charged with crimes after reporting rape to UAE authorities. A British woman Briton says she was raped in the UAE, but was fined for drinking.
The Meridien Al Aqah beach resort in UAE, which promotes itself as 'paradise on earth' certainly wasn't paradise for Alicia Gali. Apart from the brutal sexual assault, the rape victim had to face imprisonment and then the physical and mental trauma that followed.