x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Four in court over massage parlour ‘servitude’

Four people appear in court charged with "forced servitude" after women were allegedly trafficked into the UAE to work in the sex industry.

DUBAI // Prosecutors yesterday for the first time filed a charge of "forced servitude" in the case of four people accused of human trafficking.

Three women, according to prosecutors, were forced to work in a massage parlour and provide sexual favours to men while they were held in captivity by the defendants. They were forced to commit "grotesque" acts, prosecutors said.

The Dubai Attorney General's office said yesterday that two of the defendants had been detained and two others remained at large. The suspects were not identified.

"The defendants have been charged with human trafficking by means of forced servitude. We are pursuing the harshest punishment by the criminal court for them," said Essam al Humaidan, the Dubai Attorney General.

According to prosecution records, two of the defendants hired three Asian women to work in Dubai as massage specialists.

The first and second defendants in the case, both women, owned a massage parlour in the Rifaa district of Bur Dubai, records show. A date has not yet been set for the case to be heard in Judge Fahmy Mounir Fahmy's specialised human-trafficking court.

amustafa@thanational.ae