A woman from the United Kingdom is learning the hard way about the repercussions of posting negative comments on Facebook after she was arrested in Dubai. She now faces two years behind bars for calling her ex-husband’s second wife a horse.
The Express reports that Laleh Sharavesh, 55, traveled to Dubai with her 14-year-old daughter to attend the funeral of her former husband, Pedro, last week when she was arrested for a 2016 Facebook post she wrote about him and the woman he left his family for four years ago, Samah Al Hammadi.
Knowing that Sharavesh and her daughter Paris were coming to Dubai for the funeral, Al Hammadi reported the 2016 Facebook posts to authorities and had her husband’s first wife arrested. Sharavesh was separated from her daughter upon entering Dubai and was stripped of her passport.
Sharavesh is warning all travelers to the country to be aware of the law that is being used to even a score.
“I have lost everything because of this. This new cyber crime law is rendering almost every visitor to the country a criminal.”
The jailed mother from England says that she posted something negative on Facebook after finding out that her husband of 18 years had left her for a woman ten years her junior after working overseas. Instead of returning home as planned, he served her with divorce documents.
British mother, 55, has her passport confiscated and faces jail in Dubai three years after she branded her ex-husband an 'idiot' on Facebook https://t.co/PVPXWpHifN
— Daily Mail U.K. (@DailyMailUK) April 7, 2019
She says that she posted two things on Facebook which seem rather benign.
“I hope you go under the ground you idiot. Damn you. You left me for this horse.”
Sharavesh says she is facing a $50,000 fine and two years incarceration after Pedro’s wife reported her to the police, knowing she was coming to the funeral when the father of her child died suddenly. She explains that they were coming for five days so that Paris could say goodbye.
“We flew to Dubai where we were intending to stay for just five days, and were arrested immediately upon entry because Pedro’s new wife Samah had reported my old Facebook post to the police.”
Dubai’s new law means that even old social media posts can come back to haunt someone, even if they’ve been deleted. The complaining person only needs to submit a screenshot. If the person who posted the comment in question ever visits Dubai, they can be arrested, fined or both.
Sharavesh says that as a result of her arrest, she has lost her job, is going to lose her home, and is out of money with no one to care for her daughter.
“My life is in ruins, and that is even before the huge fines and jail I am facing here. All of that is less important than being separated from my daughter, and that’s all I want now, just to be back with her.”