Alexandre Robert’s Rapists Found Guilty
Posted by shadmia on December 13, 2007
Guilty! – was the verdict that a Dubai court handed down in the rape case of Alexandre Robert, a 15-year-old French citizen. Two Emirati men, identified only by their initials (18-year-old I.M. and 35-year-old A.K.), were each sentenced to 15 years in prison by Presiding Judge Fahmi Mounir of the Dubai Court of First Instance, on Wednesday, December 12, 2007. They were found guilty of forcefully undressing the 15-year old, threatening him with a knife, before having sex with him against his will. The judge also referred the victim’s compensation claim of Dh15 million to a civil court. The other person involved in the rape, 17-year-old I.S., has been charged as a juvenile and his case will be decided later this month. Click here for the background on this story.
After the verdicts were handed down, Dubai Government spokesperson, Dr Habib al Mulla said “This judgement proves the position that we have continuously been making which is that we should leave the system to take its course.” and added:
“We hope that this judgement brings an end to this ordeal and proves to everyone that our judicial system is fair, efficient and works in protecting the interests of all UAE residents.”
Veronique Robert, Alex’s mother, was not happy with the verdict. She was visibly upset after the sentence was read and promised to appeal. She said Wednesday’s sentence was too lenient for a crime that she believes is tantamount to attempted murder because one of her son’s attackers was knowingly HIV-positive at the time of the rape. She refrained from asking the death penalty for her son’s attackers, but said she hoped the sentence would be much longer.
“(My son) is going to be really disappointed believe me because he wants a big justice,” Robert said, adding that he had not been informed yet about the trial’s outcome.
“We will be very lucky if turns out he does not have AIDS… but we will appeal regardless of the medical results,” she said.
“We are content that they are declared guilty, but 15 years for (the man with HIV) is nothing,” mother Veronique Robert, a Swiss national, told Reuters after the trial.
“I will fight, even for the rest of my life, to ensure (he) gets what he deserves… he should never get out of jail, at least to ensure the safety of other boys and girls.”
Veronique Roberts has also filed a number of civil suits in courts in Paris and Geneva seeking compensation from Sheikh Khalifa, president of the United Arab Emirates, and the prime minister and vice president of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum. She is also suing others, including the Dubai police chief.
“We are here because I just would like first justice for my son; and second for every girl and boy who was raped and even had no chance to speak.”
Robert said she will drop all her pending cases if the government sets up rape clinics, recognizes the status of rape victims, and takes precautions after rape against sexually-transmitted diseases. In the wake of Wednesday’s verdict, Robert said a Dubai government official told her the emirate plans to open its first rape clinic, which she said was a small victory.
The ABC news program 20/20 will be doing a piece on the Alexandre Robert case, click on the promo below:
Véronique Robert has set up a website boycottdubai.com for those who wish to express support for her son.