Emirates men stand accused of working as male prostitutes, local rights group slam police procedures
Two men have been entrapped and accused of working together to offer and solicit gay sex for money.
A Dubai court heard yesterday (17 March) that the two were caught in a ‘sting operation’ after police found one of the defendants offering sexual services on the social networking site Whoshere, with a profile nicknamed ‘Mayoud Al Barari’.
Prosecutors also accused the 22 year-old man, mentioned by his initials A.S. of breaching ‘public modesty’ by publishing profile photos ‘wearing women’s undergarment and in full make up’, reported the daily GulfNews.
He was also charged with ‘inciting others to commit a sin’ by offering to dance for men.
A police informant posed as a customer paying for the services of A.S. and a hotel room
The police, who waited outside the hotel lobby, then busted the room and arrested A.S. naked and his 30 year-old accomplice, nicknamed A.H., half naked preparing himself to dance.
Emirates 24/7 reported that A.H. admitted only to ‘dancing, but later confessed to offering sex as well’.
The two already had previous convictions and failed to appear in the court’s session.
The court will issue its sentence on 31 March.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has a special police cyber-unit that tracks cyberspace and has previously entrapped gay men posting profiles on social-networking sites.
Last week a Filipino man was sentenced for one year imprisonment for male prostitution after an officer from the unit tracked and entrapped him.
Speaking with GSN, members of the country’s gay rights group, UAE LGBT, criticized the police’s practice and challenged the UAE to uphold human rights conventions.
‘Is this where government resources and Dubai police funding goes to?’, asked Abdulla, the chair of the group.
‘If this was truly a prostitution sting, why not focus on the rampant human trafficking rings involving many at risk and vulnerable women, in the UAE.
‘There is nothing honorable about posing as someone, luring them to a hotel and offering them cash, only to be arrested.
‘The operation is unethical and puts the men in grave danger.
‘There should be a public inquiry about Dubai police’s actions that do not reflect well on our country.
‘Only four months ago the UAE was elected to join the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).
‘Is that how they honor their commitment?’
Nasira, director of the group said: ‘Last year alone police prosecuted individuals for forcing women into prostitution.
‘I fail to see the difference between those suspects and the authority here.
‘Workers from many developing countries often cannot afford the basic living requirements which so many of us take for granted and with families to feed back in their home countries the promise of easy money would be welcomed by many of us in the same situation.
‘Whilst the conduct of the individual is morally questionable by some, entrapping an individual in such a police sting is morally repugnant.
‘Obvious attempts at targeting LGBT people had not gone unnoticed by our group and others.
‘It is time the international community, particularly the UNHRC, holds the UAE accountable.
‘Intolerance and oppression will not be permitted and we will no longer turn a blind eye to such abuses with a hand full of money behind their backs’.