A man raped one of his two daughters and forced them both into prostitution, Ras Al Khaimah Criminal Court heard this week.
The unemployed Syrian man, 51, allegedly began abusing his daughters after they came to the UAE six years ago.
The two women, aged 20 and 31, worked at hotels in Ras Al Khaimah but said their father forced them to dance at night clubs and sleep with men for money, often bringing customers home for them.
“When we refused at first, he beat us, locked us up at home, and took away our phones, then when we worked at different clubs, he took all the profit,” the younger sister said, adding that he sexually assaulted her for years.
She told the court that in December 2016, while sitting in a car parked near Saqr Hospital – where his wife was having a baby - her father raped her. She said he threatened her against telling anyone even her older sister.
"Following that incident, he often tried to have sex with me whenever he dropped me off to work but I would resist and refuse," she said.
The elder sister said her father would not molest her but would arrange men for them to sleep with for money.
“I have a voice recording of him arranging with a customer,” the 31-year-old daughter said.
She told the court that she refused to work for about a year, prompting her father to beat her constantly and when her younger sister also refused to work, he beat her too then locked them both up.
"I haven't worked for about a year, and four days before we called police, my sister also refused to dance and have sex for money," she said.
On May 20, the man caught his daughters trying to escape from home and were allegedly beaten and locked up but they managed to get hold of a phone and call Al Mamoura Police Station the next morning.
Police arrested the man the same day and questioned him on May 22.
"I didn't lock them up or force them to prostitute themselves" he told police.
"I just drove them to clubs where they worked as dancers, they wanted to dance, i didn't force them. They said they wanted to help me financially because I have 10 young children to feed, seven daughters and two sons," he said. He also told police he was paid between Dh200 to Dh300 every time one of them danced.
The man is charged with human trafficking and rape because his 20-year-old daughter was 14 at the time she was first forced to work in prostitution and therefore not legally able to consent.
He was also charged with physical assault, confinement, exploitation, issuing threats and insults and forcing both his daughters into prostitution.
In court on Tuesday, where two lawyers declined to represent him, the father denied all charges.
The next hearing is scheduled for January 24 to appoint the accused a defence lawyer.