x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Man was forced into having sex with mentally impaired woman, Dubai court told

HA, 28, from Iran, is accused of raping the woman, 22, from India, after meeting her on an internet chat room and asking to visit her apartment.

DUBAI // A man accused of raping a mentally impaired woman claims that he was forced into having sex with her.

H?A, 28, from Iran, met the woman, 22, from India, in an internet chat room and asked to visit her apartment.

The woman claims the man forced his way into her home before beating her and raping her. But H?A claims that the woman enticed him into the flat before stripping and ordering him to do the same. The man claims she threatened to scream and make a scene if he did not have sex with her.

Meanwhile, a psychiatrist testified to the Criminal Court that even if the man's account is true, because of the woman's mental impairment the sex should still be considered forceful.

The woman told prosecutors she gave the man her mobile number after the pair met on Facebook and other social-networking sites.

"He asked to see me that day," she recalled. "He asked me to show him my flat, but I refused." She said that he found out where she lived and arrived outside, after which she took a photograph of him and his car.

"He followed me to the flat and as I was entering he pushed me to the ground and locked the door," she said.

As she tried to get up the man knocked her down and kicked her in the back before ripping off her clothes and raping her, she said. Afterwards he washed and left.

About half an hour later the woman's mother arrived, finding her daughter on the ground wearing only a shirt. The daughter said she had been assaulted and the mother called police.

When officers investigated, the man claimed the woman had invited him to have sex with her. He was interviewed by the officer A?D, 35.

"He told me that the woman asked to see him and that when he went to meet her she told him to follow her to the apartment," the police officer said. "He said that when he got to the apartment she took her clothes off by herself before asking him to take off his clothes."

The man admitted to the officer that he had noticed the woman "was not normal" when he met her.

"He also said that she told him to come to her flat because there was no one present there and that when he got there she threatened to scream and make a scene if he did not have sex with her."

Saeed Al Ghilani, the lawyer of the accused man, told the court the woman took advantage of his client – not the other way round – and requested bail.

The court also heard from an Emirati psychiatrist, E?H, 35, who said the woman's mental impairment "may make her unable to control her desires like sex".

However, he said that even if the man's story was true, given the woman's condition any sex that occurred should be considered forceful.

"It may be true what the man said about not raping her – that instead he pleasured himself after she allowed him to be intimate with her," the doctor said. "Even so, the sex would still be forceful."

The court denied bail and scheduled the next hearing for September 24.

salamir@thenational.ae