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Sex and the emirate
The slew of ‘sexpat’ scandals has seen Dubai get a lot of press attention, and not in a good way. From ‘sex on the beach’ to the ‘lewd texts’ case, we take a look at how expat life can go horribly wrong.
March 22, 2010 1:36 by Aarti Nagraj
The ‘sexpat’ story has become horribly formulaic. A couple (usually from the UK) either visiting Dubai or living there, does something illegal (kissing, having sex outside marriage) and is caught by the police. The international media (again, mostly from the UK) goes to town with the story, warning tourists about the strict rules of the emirate, and at the same time, criticizing Dubai for being too conservative.
The ‘sex on the beach’ scandal in 2008 was probably the most famous case of all; here we take a look at the expat scandals that rocked Dubai.
1. JBR kiss
Two Brits were arrested in November 2009, after an Emirati woman claimed that her child had seen them kissing in a restaurant in the Jumeirah Beach Residence neighborhood in Dubai. Earlier this year it emerged that the pair had appealed against a one-month prison sentence for indecency. The charge was “committing a sexual act (by) kissing on the lips and touching,” lawyer Khalaf al-Hosani told AFP. “A final verdict will be reached on April 4,” he said.
“There was no lip kissing. It was just a normal greeting that is not considered offensive,” al-Hosani told Reuters. The pair have also been fined AED1,000 for illegal consumption of alcohol, he added.
2. Sexy texts
Two cabin crew members from Emirates Airline were jailed for three months, after a court convicted them of exchanging lewd text messages that “fulfilled all the necessary angles of coercion to the commitment of sin,” The National reported last week.
The pair, both Indians, were initially sentenced to six month jail terms followed by deportation, but the Appeals Court reduced the sentence last week, and cancelled the deportation.
The case came into light after the woman’s husband filed a lawsuit against her last year claiming that she was having an extramarital affair with her supervisor.