Monday, September 30, 2013

Rape victim sentenced 200 lashes by Saudi court

"A Saudi court sentenced a woman who had been gang raped to six months in jail and 200 lashes - more than doubling her initial penalty for being in the car of a man who was not a relative, a newspaper reported Thursday.

The decision by the Qatif General Court came in a case that had sparked rare debate about the kingdom's justice system when it surfaced more than a year ago.

In its decision Wednesday, the court also roughly doubled prison sentences for the seven men convicted of raping the 19-year-old woman, the Arab News reported on its English-language Web site.

According to Arab News, the court said the woman's punishment was increased because of "her attempt to aggravate and influence the judiciary through the media."

The New York Times reported that her lawyer, Abdulrahman al-Lahem, is a well-known human rights activist who angered the court by publicly criticizing the verdict. He said the verdict was too lenient for the rapists and unjust for the victim.." (thanks Laure)