Man sent to jail for whipping Muslim in Australia

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Associated Press

Posted on June 14, 2013 at 12:36 AM

SYDNEY (AP) — A man who whipped a Muslim convert as a religious punishment for drinking alcohol was sentenced Friday to at least 16 months in jail.

Wasim Fayad, 45, was convicted earlier this year of the 2011 attack on Christian Martinez. Sydney Central Local Court Magistrate Brian Maloney sentenced Fayad, who had been Martinez's spiritual mentor, to a maximum of two years in jail for assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

"You have brought much shame upon the Islamic faith," Maloney told Fayad during the sentencing hearing. "You have proved yourself unscrupulously cunning, deceptive and dishonest. You profess to be a religious man, however you resorted to violence upon Mr. Martinez."

The attack happened after Martinez called Fayad to admit he'd spent a night out drinking and doing drugs. Islamic Sharia laws prohibit alcohol and recommend whipping as a punishment for several offenses.

Fayad showed up at Martinez's Sydney home and whipped him 40 times with an electric cord while three other men held him down on his bed. Martinez said he cried and begged for them to stop, and was in pain for about a week after the attack.

The other three men involved received suspended sentences and were ordered to perform community service.

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