A Saudi diplomat was sentenced to 26 months’ jail and 4 strokes of the cane after he was convicted of molesting a 20-year-old hotel intern. Beijing-based diplomat from Saudi Arabia, Bander Yahya A Alzahrani, was holidaying in Singapore and when he was shown a room by a hotel trainee, he took the opportunity to grope and kiss the lady.
The hotel intern did not report to the police and was hesitant to do so as she was worried about her job prospects with the hotel. It is only with repeated persuasions by her colleagues that she came out to report the case to the hotel and police. The victim’s identity is hidden in a court gag order to protect her reputation from the high profile trial.
The Saudi diplomat is appealing his sentence and is currently out on a S$20,000 bail. According to the prosecution, the diplomat was unrepentant and did not plead guilty earlier, resulting in the victim having to put through the trauma of recounting her experience in court.
The defence lawyer pleaded for clemency claiming that the diplomat is the sole breadwinner of his family with 3 children.