x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Human trafficking sentences upheld

Three-year prison sentences for two Bangladeshi men convicted of human trafficking are upheld by the Abu Dhabi Appeals Court.

ABU DHABI // Three-year prison sentences for two Bangladeshi men convicted of human trafficking were upheld yesterday by the Abu Dhabi Appeals Court. The two men, MAM and AM, were accused of selling a housemaid, who had fled her sponsor, into prostitution. They were convicted by the emirate's Criminal Court of First Instance last month. After serving their sentence, they will both be deported. One of the men, MAM, had previously "indulged in smuggling of the disgruntled housemaids," according to WAM, the state news agency. The women were coerced into prostitution.

The police arrested the men after they attempted to sell a maid to an undercover police officer. They were sentenced after pleading guilty. The conviction followed recommendations in a report released in May by the National Committee to Combat Human Trafficking (NCCHT). The report advocated tougher measures to fight the practice, better support for victims and greater international co-operation. "The fight against human trafficking is our fight and a goal we share with all responsible nations," Dr Anwar Gargash, the Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and chairman of the NCCHT, wrote in the report.

"We have accomplished a lot in a short span of time, but we will continue to remain committed to consistently improving our efforts to tackle this crime." The US State Department placed the UAE in its second-tier list of countries with a poor record on human trafficking, along with 76 other countries including Bahrain, Iraq, Yemen, Pakistan and India. newsdesk@thenational.ae