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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 20 June 2018

Housewife who assaulted maid causing permanent disability wins reduced sentence

The woman's jail sentence was reduced form one year to three months by Dubai Court of Appeal

A housewife who bit her maid, shoved scissors in her ears and poured boiling water over her as punishment, has won a reduced sentence.

On February 8 this year, Dubai Criminal Court sentenced the Jordanian woman, 33, to one year in jail after finding her guilty on a charge of physical assault and of causing a permanent disability to the 28-year-old Indonesian maid, who lost the hearing in one of her ears.

The accused denied the charge and told judges that she had not assaulted the maid in any way; however, her maid said that since she started working for the Jordanian in 2013, she had been subjected to various forms of abuse.

"For the slightest mistake, she would hit me with her hands, a knife, scissors, sticks and sometimes bite me, pull my hair and other times pour boiling water on my body. I came to this country in good health to work in a decent job and make money to help my family and now I return home with a disability. I just want to go home, " the maid told judges.

A medical report said the maid had lost the hearing in her left ear after her head was banged against a wall, and was often locked in her room to stop her from running away. In January 2015, she did escape and visited the Indonesian consulate in Dubai, informing them of her ordeal.

"She arrived on a Thursday and said she ran away because her boss was abusing her physically, and didn’t even give her any wages for the time she worked at her house," an employee at the consulate told prosecutors.

The maid was taken to Rashid Hospital for treatment. Bruises, burn marks and other signs of abuse were found on her body and head, as well as bite marks on her shoulders.

Prosecutors said the defendant told them she locked up the maid at night because she feared for her children. She said she had not paid the maid since June 2015, but had paid her wages on time before then.

The lower court sentenced the woman to one year in jail, followed by deportation, but she filed an appeal.

Her sentence was then reduced to three months in jail by Dubai Court of Appeal, which also cancelled the deportation order.

Reasons for the lenient sentence were not made available.