Lankan maid gets justice

26 June 2010 03:23 am - 14     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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A Lebanese court in Jbeil issued a rare verdict yesterday, jailing and fining a Lebanese woman for repeatedly beating a Sri Lankan woman she employed as a domestic worker.

Criminal Court Judge Jean Tannous sentenced the woman, identified as J.E.S., to one month’s imprisonment and ordered her to pay LL10 million in compensation to her former employee.

In an even rarer judgment, Tannous barred the Lebanese woman from hiring or acting as the sponsor of a migrant domestic worker for five years. The woman, who was sentenced in absentia, was also ordered to pay all legal costs incurred in the trial. She has 15 days to appeal the ruling.

The Sri Lankan woman arrived in Lebanon in December 2004 and was said to have endured regular beatings at the hands of her woman employer until she ran away in 2007. She sought refuge with her embassy, which referred her case to the non-governmental organization Caritas. The organization provided her with shelter and legal services before she returned home in May 2007.

“It’s clear based on the … evidence that the plaintiff was hurt repeatedly over a long period of time,” said the court ruling, a copy of which was obtained by The Daily Star.

“This is also according to the forensic doctor Naji Saibi and based on photographic evidence … the defendant intentionally beat and hurt the plaintiff.” The Lebanese denied beating her employee but said that she would stay alone with her when her husband went to work and forbade her from leaving the house.

Dima Haddad, a senior social worker at Caritas, hailed the verdict as a welcome move that could pave the way for further prosecutions. “This judgment is a good initiative and a step forward for vulnerable people,” she said, adding that judges were becoming increasingly aware of the plight of domestic workers and treating the issue “more humanely.” (The Daily Star)

  Comments - 14

  • MaPer Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:53 AM

    The Arab women are a suppressed lot, som,etimes bearing up with husbands who are having several wives. Because they cannot relaliate to the husband, they vent their anger on the innocent housemaids.

    sena Sunday, 27 June 2010 02:56 AM

    Lankawick comments have some merits. You can see it at their airports. Westerners are treated seperately

    Sicillian Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:55 AM

    Dear Lankawick your mentality is the problem for Sri Lanka. Look at Rizana nafeeks case in Saudi. Talk responsibly in this site as many viewers around the world see it. Don't talk racism here and we are just after a war.

    queenkuweni Sunday, 27 June 2010 04:10 AM

    Finally justice has been served!

    Priyanka Saturday, 26 June 2010 08:40 AM

    yes.poor arab women and poor sri lankan girls.

    Mullah Omar Saturday, 26 June 2010 08:58 AM

    This is what happens when you seek eye for eye and teeth for teeth.Look at Iraq, Afganistan etc

    Shaik Anwar Ahamath Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:14 AM

    We should rejoice at this landmark verdict. More should be expected from Lebanon which not so long ago suffered under a belligerent occupying force.

    Niroshan Saturday, 26 June 2010 09:35 AM

    Am I dreaming?

    Lankan Saturday, 26 June 2010 12:49 PM

    Don't give comments without a knowledge of Arab Judgment. They can't do like that.

    Lankawick Saturday, 26 June 2010 04:33 AM

    Because of "Oil wealth", most Arabs consider themselves as being superior to other Asians...specially look down on non-Islamic Asians...while prefer to "look up" at Caucasians.

    Sampath - Vietnam Saturday, 26 June 2010 05:04 AM

    Very few are aware of the great work carried out by the Caritas universally. This is a splendid example.

    Concerned citizen Saturday, 26 June 2010 06:54 AM

    Sri Lankan embassies based in the Middle East should do more to protect the migrant workers, especially those helpless women working for Arab employers.

    ajith Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:04 AM

    Arab judgment always awarded in favor of its citizen no matter right or wrong.The foreigners are treated as second class citizen.
    This is surprise news, Cannot believe!!!!!!!!

    Lanka Atapattu Saturday, 26 June 2010 07:20 AM

    we need to stop sending Sri Lankan women as hows maids ................to any country in world not only Arab.............


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