By Marie Nammour
June 14, 2013, UAE (Khaleej Times) – A woman allegedly tortured her
two employees, beat them regularly and denied them food and medical
treatment, which later resulted in the death of one of them, a court
The victim weighed just 37kg at the time of her death and a friend of
the woman, who testified against her, said that the suspect tried to
bribe one maid with money so she would not talk to the police.
The 45-year-old Emirati, R.A., who works as a public relations
officer, allegedly subjected her Ethiopian and Filipina employees to
daily beatings as well as physical and mental torture, with both maids
sustaining severe injuries, leading to infection because of not
providing medical treatment. This, along with other factors, led to the
Ethiopian maid’s death.
R.A’s husband, a 42-year-old policeman, A.A., allegedly watched as
his wife physically abused the maids and deprived them of their freedom
by locking them up in the bathroom. He tightly secured his villa in Nad
Al Hamar area so the two maids could not escape.
The couple denied in the Court of First Instance charges of illegal
imprisonment, deprivation of freedom with the use of force, physical and
mental torture, leading to death, and causing bodily harm. However, the
Public Prosecution is seeking life imprisonment for the duo.
The Filipina maid, 29, who survived the torture, which lasted for a
couple of months, told the prosecutor that her employer used to beat her
and deny her food. She also forced her to drink a mix of detergents
when she was not satisfied with her cleaning duties.
The maid said that R.A. would threaten her with jail and intimidate
her by saying that her and her husband had respectable jobs and
connections with the police and immigration.
On several occasions, the two maids were brought into the villa and
locked in a bathroom, where R.A. had a camera fixed to the wall so she
could watch them while she was away from the villa.
She would also threaten to circulate nude pictures of them which she took after forcing them to take their clothes off.
The Filipina also claimed that R.A. would assault them and bang their
heads against the wall while cleaning the house. R.A. fed the deceased
only a piece of onion, sugar and salt for five days.
After losing consciousness, due to the constant beatings and malnutrition, the couple were forced to feed the victim better.
When the victim’s injuries became infected, R.A. refused to take her
to a hospital as she was afraid she might be held accountable for the
A maid of the employer’s friend testified to the beatings and said
that she herself was subjected to abuse by R.A. She claimed the latter
threw detergent on her face and forced her to sniff her underwear to
humiliate her as she laughed.
R.A.’s Emirati friend, a 35-year-old manager, testified that she saw
R.A. beating the victim with a stick and that the latter was often
bruised. She said that she heard R.A., on January 16, beg the maid not
to speak to the police and offered her money and anything she wanted.
A forensic expert said the victim weighed only 37kg when she died.
Torture, malnutrition and negligence of injuries all contributed to her
death. Her blood sample contained traces of a pesticide.