A woman has been accused of torturing her two maids and causing one of them to die of pneumonia, while she kept them unfed and locked in her Al Rashidiya home for more than a month.
The surviving maid, a Filipina, alleged that the 45-year-old Emirati woman, Roha M.(real name withheld), beat them with sticks while unclad, banged their heads against the wall until they bled, and also forced them to drink cleaning products. She told the court her Ethiopian colleague was so hungry she searched for food in the garbage.
Prosecution records said the severity of the torture and conditions of their confinement led to the Ethiopian’s death and caused the 29-year-old Filipina, Emma(name withheld) to suffer severe injuries.
Dubai Police’s forensic expert, who examined the injuries of the Ethiopian confirmed that she had been tortured consistently for more than a month.
The examiner said keeping her without medication worsened her health and caused her to develop pneumonia.
“The fact that she was made to drink a pesticide quickened her death,” said the examiner.
According to the charge sheet, prosecutors said Roha M. also failed to provide the maids with medical care that led to the Ethiopian’s death while the Filipina suffered serious injuries.
Roha’s husband was also charged with aiding and abetting his wife by preparing a room at the top of his villa and sealing its windows from outside to confine the maids.
The Emirati husband and his wife entered a not guilty plea when they defended themselves before the Dubai Court of First Instance.
Roha said with a jittery voice: “No… that did not happen. I swear to God. I did not touch the maids. I knew nothing about their injuries.”
Presiding judge Ali Atiyyah Sa’ad rejected Roha’s bail request and adjourned the trial to hear witnesses on July 1. The husband remains out on bail.