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Monday, July 22, 2013

Norwegian woman: I was raped in Dubai, now I face prison sentence

Norwegian interior designer Marte Deborah Dalelv has spoken out after being handed a 16-month prison sentence in Dubai -- after she went to police to report she had been raped by a colleague.
The 24-year-old was convicted and sentenced on charges of having unlawful sex, making a false statement and illegal consumption of alcohol.

Her story is dominating the headlines in Norway, and has raised serious questions over the way women who allege sexual assault are treated in the United Arab Emirates.

Dalelv, who had been working at an interior design firm in Qatar since September 2011, told CNN on Saturday how a work trip to Dubai in March with three colleagues turned into a nightmare.

She said she had been out at a bar with her colleagues and friends, and asked a male colleague to walk her to her room when they returned at 3 a.m. to the hotel. She'd asked him to escort her because the hotel was large and confusing, and she didn't want to be wandering on her own, knowing she'd been drinking, she said.

When they reached a room, she realized it wasn't hers -- but the man then pulled her inside despite her vocal objections, according to Dalelv.

"He dragged me by my purse in, so I thought, 'OK, I just need to calm the situation down. I will finish my bottle of water, I will sit here and then I will excuse myself and say I feel fine,'" she said.
That was pretty much the last thing she said she remembers before the alleged sexual assault. "I woke up with my clothes off, sleeping on my belly, and he was raping me. I tried to get off, I tried to get him off, but he pushed me back down."

After someone knocked -- the hotel wake-up call -- she managed to get dressed and make it downstairs to the hotel reception, Dalelv said. "I called the police. That is what you do. We are trained on that from when we are very young," she said.
Some 10 or 12 male police officers arrived, but no female police officers were present, she said. Statements were taken from both Dalelv and the alleged rapist.
She was then taken to Bur Dubai police station, she said.

After again giving her version of events to officers, Dalelv said, "They asked me, 'Are you sure you called the police because you just didn't like it?' I said, 'Well of course I didn't like it.' That is when I knew, I don't think they are going to believe me at all."

Dalelv says she was taken for an intimate medical exam and tested for alcohol consumption. Her belongings were taken and she was kept in jail for four days, she said, with no explanation as to why.
Dubai police and UAE government officials have not responded to repeated CNN requests for comment.
Dalelv said she managed to call her parents on the third day to tell them she had been raped and ask them to contact the Norwegian Embassy. A day later, a representative from the Norwegian consulate came to the police station and she was released -- but her passport was not returned.
A piece of paper with Arabic text was handed to her, she said. An Arabic speaker told her it listed two charges against her: one for sex outside of marriage and the other for public consumption of alcohol. Both are violations of the law in the United Arab Emirates.

It was the first time she was made aware that she faced charges, Dalelv said.
She was allowed out on bail and has been staying since at the Norwegian Seaman's Center in Dubai.
Subsequently, she said her manager advised her to tell the police it was voluntary sexual intercourse and likely the whole issue would just go away. She followed the advice and in one of the many hearings at the public prosecutor's office, she made a statement saying it was voluntary.
Dalelv was then charged with making a false statement.
"That was my biggest regret because it wasn't voluntary. I just thought it would all go away," she told CNN.
But a representative of Al Mana Interiors, who Dalelv worked for, told CNN that she was not advised by her manager to say the sex was consensual but rather by a police officer, who told her that in Arabic and it was translated into English by her manager.

Dalelv said a month after the rape, while forced to stay in Dubai as the case wound through the legal system, she was fired.
The representative, who declined to be publicly identified, said Dalelv and the Sudanese man she accused -- who is married with three children -- have both been terminated by Al Mana Interiors for "drinking alcohol at a staff conference that resulted in trouble with the police."
A statement released late Saturday by Al Mana Interiors spokesman Hani El Korek said the company was sympathetic to Dalelv "during this very difficult situation." It also said that company representatives were by her side through the initial investigation, spending "days at both the police station and the prosecutor's office to help win her release."
"Only when Ms. Dalelv declined to have positive and constructive discussions about her employment status, and ceased communication with her employer, was the company forced to end our relationship with her," the statement said.
"The decision had nothing to do with the rape allegation, and unfortunately neither Ms. Dalelv nor her attorneys have chosen to contact the company to discuss her employment status."
The company is owned by Qatari billionaire Wissam Al Mana, who made headlines earlier this year after it was revealed that he has secretly married singer Janet Jackson in 2012.
Dalelv was convicted Tuesday on all three charges and was sentenced to one year in jail for having unlawful sex, three months in jail for making a false statement and one month for illegal consumption of alcohol.

CNN could not immediately confirm what happened to the alleged perpetrator, who was charged with public intoxication and having sex outside of marriage.

Dalelv is scheduled to appear at the court on September 5 to begin the appeal proceedings. Dalelv, who is not allowed to leave the UAE pending the appeal, said her lawyers have instructed her to be prepared to go back into jail while they submit a request for bail while the appeal is ongoing.
As a rule, CNN does not identify victims of sexual assault, but Dalelv went public with her story.

A Facebook page has been set up calling for Dalelv's release, as well as a petition urging the Norwegian government to take action on her behalf.

Her conviction may risk wider diplomatic repercussions.
Norwegian Foreign Affairs Minister Espen Barth Eide called his UAE counterpart, Sheikh Abdullah Bin Zayed al-Nahyan, on Friday night to protest Dalelv's sentencing, a statement from the Norwegian ministry said.

"I emphasized that we believe that the conviction is contrary to fundamental human rights, including conventions that the UAE have officially ratified," Eide is quoted as saying.
"Norway will continue to do what we can to support her in what is a very difficult situation. Our cooperation with the UAE is strong and good, but I conveyed to my colleague that we are worried that this difficult case may disturb our good relations if we do not reach a good solution in the near future."

Dalelv told CNN she received a call from Eide on Friday reiterating Norway's support.
While Dubai has a reputation as a cosmopolitan city that boasts Western influences, where visitors can drink at bars and restaurants and unmarried couples can share hotel rooms, the country adheres to Islamic laws and traditions.

The United Arab Emirates has been heavily criticized by rights groups, which say it condones sexual violence against women. Human Rights Watch has called its record "shameful," saying it must change the way it handles such cases.

In December 2012, a British woman reported being raped by three men in Dubai. She was found guilty of drinking alcohol without a license and fined.

In January 2010, a British woman told authorities she was raped by an employee at a Dubai hotel. She was charged with public intoxication and having sex outside of marriage.
An Australian woman reported in 2008 that she was drugged and gang-raped. She was convicted of having sex outside marriage and drinking alcohol, and she was sentenced to 11 months in prison.

Culled from CNN

73 comments:

Anonymous said...

Saw the news briefly on sky news but I can't read this epistle mehn.
This woman is 24??? Hmmmmm na wa! 24??? Oyinbo yi rora

ATLbaby said...

So annoying! How can a woman be convicted for being raped....this makes my blood boil. The level of atrocity these arabs commit against women is unimaginable. Disparity is so largely established and inequality of women celebrated. I hope the Norwegian government fights this to the last, i trust American government on a case like this....

Cute G said...

Its so heartbreaking nd I feel so irked abt these Illiterate Arab countries wt the way females re treated wt disrespect nd no regard. I think its high time their govt got sued.mstchewwwww

Anonymous said...

But lets not lie these whiteys r used to it, esp with black people n other races, u meet them in the club, they get drunk, u go home together n have sex, the next morning they shout rape n call police for u, she think say she dey norway, Dubai oma gba iranu, women r not supposed to be going wild n shit in the first place, u put urself for trouble com expose urself, Thats y u never stay till the next morning when their eyes clear even if u want to do oyinbo...If na uk the guy's own done done be that...ignore my razzness!
Alcohol is the devil's drink, I'm not cold or unfeeling and rape is a very touchy subject just stop sipping from the devil's cup if u can't handle it. Period!
Not to be shouting "orange murder" after una don nakk una selves....

Anonymous said...

when i sent you my own message about what is happening to nigerians here in qatar you never posted it. now you went to post this stupid news because it happen to a white lady. linda your a racist if you like don't post my comment but this should be the last time am gonna subscribe to this blog

vicksy said...

She can't be serious. Did she not know it was illegal to be with an opposite sex in a Hotel room in Dubai? She had alcohol without a drinking license, she had sex with a colleague - she deserves to be in jail.

Anonymous said...

Eyaaaaa.....but this shit happens alot in Dubai oh! Heard about a Chinese guy who hooked up with a lady in one of dos dubai clubs. They went back to his hotel room and after all their activities, the guy woke up and noticed the girl bailed with all his money! He went to the police station to report and the guy ended up serving jail time. He was charged with having sex with someone he is not married to or some shit like that! If that is the case, all the niajas that go there with their boy/girl friends will be serving time oh, abi what do they think happens behind closed doors.

Anonymous said...

These stories are so common that its a wonder how any woman can consume alcohol in these Islamic states. I personally will not accept even a 7 figure salary to work in such countries. Their freedom is false. Dubai, Bahrain, Iran, Pakistan are all the same, just different PR.

Anonymous said...

Haaaaa na wa ooooo
Dubai sef wetin!
The woman said she was raped and you're charging her for sex outside marriage
Tufia ona !

BONARIO NNAGS said...

And what happens to the men?

~BONARIO~says so via NOKIA3310

Anonymous said...

To be quite honest, d woman consumed alcohol publicly, had sex outside of marriage, which she said was consensual, then retracted it - false statement. quite tricky.... should have stuck to one statement

↭PRINCE JOBLESS↭ said...

The world will be a better place without the Arabs and muslims. Seriously.

Anonymous said...

Bla bla bla story too long,eya sowie 4 d lady sha.

--DIVA

Midex of Life said...

Justice must take its proper course.

Marvellous Emma-Nwachukwu said...

First to comment!

Anonymous said...

That's the law in UAE! Allow urself to get raped n you'd b tossed to jail.. how do ppl drink to stupor n forget themselves tho! Beats my imagination. Moral of the story, just zip up and respect urself while in UAE n you'd never get in trouble.

★★PRINCE CHARMING™★★ said...

The Arab nation just needs to stop treating women as lower humans, they justify all this nonsense with some religious crap about the place of a woman, I pity women in that region. In Saudi, a woman can't even drive a car, and some other crap you would hear about. They treat women as if they are just toys or something, shame on them! This lady needs justice!

KayDiaries said...

Oh Lawd God have mercy, what the heck?

Anonymous said...

Na wa oh! Nothing good comes from Islamic counties on cases like this , because women are rated as second class and treated unfairly. But I thought Dubai is flexible cos of the amount of tourists that visits .

Anonymous said...

I can hear the officers saying...It is her fault as she enticed the man. If she was wearing full hijab none of this would have happened. If you are of covered, then of course it is your fault for enticing the man. On top of that the poor man who is now the victim of temptation is pardoned for sex outside marriage too as he was enticed......do the right thing people religion or no religion, culture or no culture.

Anonymous said...

This girl/woman is funny. She has stayed in dis country 4 a while,she knows d laws. Did she have 2 drink so much publicly 2 the extent she'd need a male figure 2 escort her and she won't recognize her room? Sometimes individuals r to be blamed for their silly mistakes. I doubt if her country can help her on this one. Those people take their laws very seriously...... Selly

Anonymous said...

And this is a place where our Nigerian women call paradise.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like consensual sex to me. I bet that's what the Sudanese guy is claiming. So its her word against his.

CCTV shows her asking the guy to take her upstairs and walking steady on her feet into the guy's room. There was no sign of a struggle or assault.

And why in the world would she change her statement to voluntary sex if she was really raped?

She woke up the following morning, regretting the night before and shouted wolf.

Anonymous said...

What of those that didn't drink alcohol? Why do they have bars and clubs if one can be charged with drinking publicly. And the adulterer was he also charged with having sex outside of marriage? Even in the most liberal islamic cities one has to be very careful

Anonymous said...

God help us!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Its only God dt can protect d female folks,y wud dey charge d poor lady wif stupid allegations,she was raped n been sentenced bcos of dt. *sigh*

Anonymous said...

Hahaha.. Welcome to DUBAI(or should i say UAE)! In case y'all DON'T know, women are TOOLS around here!
I'd say this is one of the few minuses of being a woman in the UAE lol, they already have alot of pluses :). I guess you can't just have it all :).

If you're a single fine/hot babe with morals, dignity n discipline, trying to survive on your own (e.g not from a rich family, living on ur own, not receiving any form of assistance from ur parents back home, or sending money home), DUBAI n the entire UAE is NOT FOR YOU! If u know what i mean.

Being a rich, independent or married woman is the only way you can avoid SEXIST men here in the UAE, or HORNY "men in power" who only want to get in UR PANTS!

If giving up ur vagina is nothing to you, then believe me, you'll LOVE it here! cos u won't have nothing to worry about here!

Anonymous said...

What the hell? Why are they protecting the pervert that rape this women? The idea of charging them with d comsuption of alcohol and have sex outside marriage is very sily, it is just a way of avoid the real truth. Charge the silly man who was accused of rape. abeg!

Anonymous said...

These people must be thinking with their ass, no respect for women @ aLl.. So d woman 4 no report? ....arab stupid laws and 2face carry weeding wey we 4 flex here go der,him get luck sha...let her country do somfin fast,i so trust america if na em e 4 no easy @ all.
VALENTINO

Anonymous said...

sharia. Sani yerima things. These people dont just respect women

Anonymous said...

All dis blasted islamic countries, i feel for dia women, dis is hw dey wil giv birth 2 female serial killers. Dis few women dat spoke up are foriegners, only God knws d number of sexually abused islamic women dieing in silence..smh

»kruiza« said...

I've seen dat these muslims n their laws doesn't have much regard for women

Anonymous said...

God punish them.person say dey rape am u dey call am sex outside marriage.that means d word RAPE is not in their dictionary.bastards

nekkyville said...

These muslims r jst d problem of d world.dey cause prblms everywere.kai.such hypocrisy.afta enjoyin demselvs wit d woman,dey wud turn d table n acuuse her...

Anonymous said...

Let's all read btw the lines.....all these women were under intoxicants(alcohol).Who knows whether it was voluntary sex or not because Dalelv herself said she was a bit confused with finding her hotel.In Dubai,they are quite lenient with their regulations especially to foreigners.In Saudi Arabic,u can't try consuming Alcohol or illegal sexual intercourse in bars and hotels.People get away with all sort crimes in Dubai.So I really don't believe the story.Some years back,this british couple got carried away and made out at the beach in dubai under alchohol consumption and just got 1month prison sentence after their PM pleaded with dubai gov to continue their sentence in their home country.they can't grant 9ja that pleading.Let's still remember UAE is a Muslim Country

Anonymous said...

Haba! Y wuld UAE choose to demoralize diz gal. Afta wat she has passed tru stil giving her 16 months in prison. Dis is jux plain mean

Adaobi Ononeze said...

Women suffer bt d men perpetrate ds act do not no d av been cursed.

Anonymous said...

Dis one na gbege ooooo. Alchol no good ooooo.

Anonymous said...

And to think that I wanted to spend my holidays there. Hmmm, Linda, thanks for this info. I would never go there

Anonymous said...

These white women will get drunk. Have sex and regret it then.claim rape.

Anonymous said...

So here's the rather bitter conclusion I got from that write up.
Women, if you get raped in dubai, lick your wounds and don't tell anyone. Least of all dubai's finest. You only get jail term in addition to your troubles!!!

Its a sad,sad world we live in.

Mich said...

Only goes to show the kind of discrimination leveled against women.
Arab nations and their hypocrisy,such a sad tale.

Anonymous said...

I WILL ALWAYS WONDER WHAT GOOD ISLAM IS TO THIS WORLD AND TO WOMEN ESPECIALLY. THE RELIGION DOES NOT SEEK TO HELP WOMEN AT ALL. NA DEM KNOW. LINDA THANK YOU FOR THIS POST.I NEVER KNEW DUBAI WAS THAT BAD. AT LEAST NOW I KNOW HOW TO CONDUCT MYSELF THERE OR BETTER STILL NOT GO THERE AT ALL

Anonymous said...

Hypocritic people, hypocritic religion.....useless set ☀̤̣̈̇f mongrels....

Anonymous said...

Before u start running your mouth it has nothing to do with the religion oh btw am a christian

Anonymous said...

and na their women do bad thing pass o under that their hijab. Poor woman i hope and pray they let her go but these dubai people always have these kind of controversial stories and most times end up sending the victims to jail so one needs to be very careful in dubai. Its still one of the most beautiful places i have ever been to sha

Anonymous said...

No offence but you guys say stupid things sometimes, because if u were literates, u will know that the religion of Islam is practiced by Arabs but their laws are not completely guided by Religion. They also have their LAWS which says you should not consume Alcohol or have sex outside marriage. but because Dubai is a tourist attraction, they decided to issue out a licence to those that intend to drink. I'm not saying what happened to the lady is good, but when your in a country,learn to obey their laws because they will not bend it for you because something bad happened to you while you were breaking the law.

Damochedxb said...

Not trying to excuse RAPE, but this white woman should have known better than to go to the Dubai police with this her tale.. Alot of crazier shit happen in UAE, people dont just involve the police.. Hundreds of thousands of people have unlawful sex and illegal consumption of alcohol here daily. In the Emirate i live in, the overall Sheikh is the only Alcohol merchant,anyone can buy booze from his stores without a license. I am sure Ms Dalelv forgot about the laws of the country before she made that call to the popo. Before u call the police here, be sure that u are not breaking any laws, cos even the weed that you have smoked 6 months back in your country can land u in jail in Dubai if your blood is tested.. All the same, i feel sorry for her..

bubbles said...

Asin PJ seriously...everywhere they are all the same nawa o

Anonymous said...

People shld think reasonably and not mix up Religion with Culture. Every country has its rules and regulations and no one is above the law. Not all country's like 9ja where pple get away wit things, especially foreigners! Lets face d fact, if u err u face d consequences. However, it's Unfortunate that CNN has a one-sided story claiming they cldnt get info frm the alleged colleague n his lawyers. When u are in rome behave like a Roman.

bola said...

they are playing ludo, lol

Anonymous said...

May Allah have mercy on you.

Anonymous said...

Well said anon 11:51am

Anonymous said...

I live in dubai. Its the woman's fault , u cant be smarter than dubai police. The woman lied at the first place, the guy didn't rape her .Maybe there was misunderstanding, and the lady felt the police will be on her side as a woman.

Anonymous said...

U are very right .I live in dubai once u disobey their laws theres no going back. The woman lied.

Anonymous said...

You left your comfort zone for another that's full of limitations. See the outcome?

Jay Ricki said...

If She was convicted for alcoholism, Why is She crying out. She knows She committed by taking alcohol n its not acceptable in Her country.
The guy too should go behind bars since He's not married n assaulting a lady.

Mary Edeke said...

Dis is bull crap... So d men go scot free??
MYRAYA

Mary Edeke said...

Dis is bull crap... So d men go scot free??
MYRAYA

Anonymous said...

Your a foolish and hopeless idiot, very idiotic statement you moron.

coldcavein said...

I have lived in Dubai for 4yrs. Never been in trouble or even pay a single fine. You know the logic, stay out of trouble. Respect the law, respect yourself. Its very simple.

Anonymous said...

I pray you'll be raped you stupid fool then I'll see were you got the effrontery to type that statement.

Anonymous said...

Your a foolish and hopeless idiot, very idiotic statement you moron.

Ayo said...

I live in Dubai.. Trust Me, Illiteracy is d word... Developed State full of underdeveloped/uncivillized People...

Anonymous said...

People pls leave dubai alone dats there country and there law..if u don't want anytin lyk dat stay in ur home land cikenan

Anonymous said...

You are so ryt on this, wiSh dey can all b wiped out!

Anonymous said...

Serve her well, u thought u ar in a fucking europe nations when falsehood is been change to facts. After being intoxicated and u lured a man into sex and both of u agree on alcoholic concept, na u raise am alarm for raped. Stupid slut did u knw the meaning of rape. Those that needs equity must do equity and those that comes to equity must come wit clean hands. The world will hav been a beta with alcohol and westeninzation. Bravoooo Dubai

Anonymous said...

Most of d people criticizing this country are the ones that would go shopping there 2moro and still brag about it. Who is d hypocrite? Linda is not an exception..... Selly

Anonymous said...

Lol!!!!!i have not one ounce of pity for her..serves her right...typical white trash girl..i am sure they were having a proper illicit relationship,d guy probably told her he couldn't continue any more with her,and she screamed rape..Lol...trust me dats what these white trash girls do

Anonymous said...

Dubai is a beautiful place to visit,and they have rules and regulations,which is what is holding the country.They are not as rich as Nigeria aand they have managed what they have well.Let's come back to 9ja.......our country is worse in terms of justice,very lawless!The lady in question,knows the law and went against it under consumption of alcohol which God forbids.So you see,I live here in dubai and as a christian woman,I love this place and believe me,women are respected fine fine hear.

Anonymous said...

No one deserves to be raped. Every womn deserves protection from assault not punishment for it. All the people here condoneing rape or saying she aasked for it are most likely men.
Just imagine being invaded by nother guy and u start to understand the wrongness of it. You then go to the police and it is your fault for having drink with colleagues and hoping they will be decent enough to walk you to your room and not rape you..

Anonymous said...

I have two things to say
1. Wen in Rome....u know the rest
2. Nigerians plz learn to read. It's news, its suppose to be long, if they don't give full details now, una go still complain. Knowledge is power, u have to be fully aware. All most of u want is summary, u want to be spoon fed. Summary is someone telling u d story how he or she understnds it. They give u d full thing to help u form ur own opinion with the knowledge of knowing the full story.... So pls, all of u saying its too long, if u don't want to read, then don't open the page or comment. Doh!........#that girl...Linda plz post cos people gotta know.

Anonymous said...

egregious despatch and i like to take for granted from your posts