Janet Jackson’s husband, Wissam Al Mana, is catching heat for firing a female employee after she reported a rape by a male co-worker. According to the BBC, Marte Deborah Dalelv worked as an interior designer for Al Mana Interiors. The rape incident occurred in March during a business trip to Dubai.
The BBC reports that Dubai police arrested Dalelv and took away her passport after she reported the rape. She was sentenced to 16 months in prison while her alleged rapist was sentenced to 13 months for having an extramarital affair. Under Sharia law, the moral code and religious law of Islam, Dalelv participated in “an extramarital affair” with her rapist. She was convicted for violating that law.
After her conviction, Dalelv was suspended by her bosses at Al Mana interiors. Three weeks later, she received a letter, signed by Al Mana himself, informing her that she was “terminated for misconduct and breach of your employment duties, effective immediately.”
In a statement via Forbes, the billionaire’s spokesman said Al Mana was “sympathetic” to Dalelv’s plight.
From US Weekly:
“We are sympathetic to Marte Dalelv during this very difficult situation,” the statement read. “Al Mana Interiors has repeatedly offered Marte support and company representatives were by her side throughout the initial investigation and police interviews, and spent days at both the police station and the prosecutor’s office to help win her release.”
“Company representatives have been supportive and in communication with Marte throughout her ordeal. Only when Ms. Dalelv declined to have positive and constructive discussions about her employment status, and ceased communication with her employer, was the company forced to end our relationship with her,” it continued.
“The decision had nothing to do with the rape allegation, and unfortunately neither Ms. Dalelv nor her attorneys have chosen to contact the company to discuss her employment status.”
Through the assistance of the Norwegian embassy, Dalelv was released from prison. She plans to appeal her sentence in September.
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