Businessman jailed for promoting sex toys on Facebook

Dubai: The Dubai Court of Cassation has dismissed the appeal by

a businessman who was jailed for a month for possessing over 150 types of sex toys and promoting their sale on Facebook and social media networks in Dubai.

The Ukrainian businessman had imported multiple-use sex toys from China by courier and posted images of those products on a special Facebook page where he promoted them in 2016.

Dubai Police’s economic crimes section was alerted that the Ukrainian and a countryman, a communications expert, were promoting the sale and distribution of sex toys.

After obtaining prosecutor’s permission, Dubai Police tasked the informant with contacting the advertisers and pose as a client as part of a sting operation.

The informant called up the number that was advertised on the Facebook page and agreed to meet the person, who attended the call, to buy three male sex toys for Dh1,000.

Soon after the deal was struck, police raided the flat at Silicon Oasis where the defendant had been keeping the sex toys and apprehended him. His countryman was also taken into custody.

Prosecutors charged the Ukrainian businessman with possessing items of pornographic and sexual nature and illegally promoting them on social media.

The communications expert was accused of failing to report a crime to the authorities, according to the charge sheet.

The two defendants pleaded not guilty when they appeared before the Dubai Misdemeanours Court.

The court sentenced the businessman to one month in jail followed by deportation.

The accomplice was fined Dh10,000.

The defendants appealed their judgements before the Dubai Appeal Court that upheld the primary ruling.

The Ukrainians challenged the appellate verdict before the Dubai Cassation Court that dismissed the two appeals and upheld the judgement.

During the sting operation, police seized more than 150 sex toys for males and females from the flat during the raid.

The businessman contended that he had been living in the UAE for eight years and that, as he needed money, he started promoting the sex toys on Facebook.

“Police raided my flat in the afternoon shortly after I had sold a dildo to an Arab man. The items were sexual materials and I used to import them from China to sell them in Dubai. I was aware that advertising and selling such items is against the law, but I sold them because I needed money. I had started selling them six months prior to my arrest,” he was quoted as telling interrogators.

During prosecution questioning, the businessman retracted his confession before the police and alleged that he possessed the sex toys for his personal use.

He further claimed that his countryman did not sell any sex toys but was aware that he had been selling them.

The communications expert said the sex toys belonged to his countryman.

The ruling has become final.

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