— Billy Bloke (@eBayDownUnder) December 9, 2016
The wife of an Islamic State recruiter who would not remove her burqa in court has lost her law suit against police and could now be fined $100,000.
Moutia Elzahed tried to sue police after they raided her Southwest Sydney home, in September 2014 during a counter-terrorism raid and accused them of assault, the Daily Mail reports.
Ms Elzahed, wife of the already convicted Hamdi Alqudsi, claimed police burst into her bedroom at 4:30am, pulled off the blankets, punched her in the ear, eye and head and called her a ‘b****’ as they handcuffed her.
The convicted terrorist recruiter’s wife refused to remove her burqa when giving evidence so District Judge Audrey Balla threw out her six police brutality accusations yesterday.
The judge said:
Ms Elzahed is a religious Muslim and she refused to give evidence in open court with her face uncovered. She also refused to give evidence from a remote room with her face uncovered (so that she could choose not to see who was watching her give evidence) with the court room closed so that only lawyers involved in the proceedings would be in the court room.
I refused to permit her to give evidence with her face covered. Accordingly there is no direct evidence from Ms Elzahed.
The terrorist’s wife explained she would only take it off under the condition the men in the court room turned away so they could not see her.
However, the judge argued this would create difficulties in hearing the evidence, as the religious veil would distort her ‘demeanour.’
Alqudsi and her son Hamza George, 17, gave evidence against police, with her husband claiming his wife’s face was red on the day of the arrest.
— A Com News (@ACOMNEWS) September 1, 2016
However, this was also thrown out as he later revealed she had been wearing a niqab after cross-examination, meaning only her eyes would have been visible and it would have been impossible for him to tell.
Her claim was further diminished as she was alone when police entered meaning it was just her word against the police’s.
Her sons also brought forward police brutality claims, as one said he was ‘pushed down on the floor with violence’ and handcuffed ‘in an aggressive manner injuring his arms and wrists.’
The other son stated he was shoved against a cupboard and still has marks on his body. He also claimed he was ‘pushed on the floor in a violent manner and handcuffed’.
Both of these reports were also thrown out and Ms Elzahed could now be prosecuted under new NSW laws for disrespectful behaviour and refusing to stand when the judge entered.
Her barrister, Clive Evatt explained:
She’s a Muslim, Your Honour, a strict Muslim and according to my instructions she won’t stand for anyone except Allah which I’m not particularly happy with, Your Honour.
— Australia Trends (@australizer) December 7, 2016
This new offence was initiated in September and can result in a 14-day prison sentence or a fine of $1100 if convicted.
If found guilty, Ms Elzahed could join her husband who is currently serving an eight year jail sentence, for recruiting men to fight with terrorist organisations and Islamic State.