JAFFA, Israel – A Saudi Arabian court has sentenced a man to four years’ imprisonment and 1,000 lashes for “acting like a woman.”
The defendant, a migrant from an unknown Arab country, was convicted of “inappropriate behavior” – an attempt to masquerade as a woman. After his release, he will be deported from the kingdom.
The defendant tried to pass himself off as a woman on social media, which the Saudi authorities deemed “an objectionable sin that violates the principles set by the prophet [Muhammad].”
Police confiscated 14 pictures that showed the defendant in “improper situations,” some while wearing women’s clothes.
The prosecution accused him of “sodomy, transgression, and homosexuality,” and requested a heavy sentence that would “set an example.”
The final sentence was lighter than in similar cases, because “the court believes the remorse shown by the defendant was genuine” the verdict said. The court also ordered the man to close all his social media accounts and pay a 25,000 riyal (US$6,000) fine.