Egypt Rights Group Blasts Saudi Flogging of Designer
Wedding planner also jailed after dispute with royal family
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Aug 28, 2012 3:38 PM CDT
An Egyptian designer was sentenced to 500 lashes over a business-related falling out with a Saudi princess.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – An Egyptian designer's sentence—500 lashes and five years in prison over a business feud—has human rights activists up in arms. Designer and wedding planner Nagla Wafa was accused of cashing a Saudi princess's check while bailing on a plan to open a restaurant together, the Los Angeles Times reports. Wafa "has been subjected, on a weekly basis, to 50 floggings per week within the 'Al-Malz' prison," says the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, which has filed a complaint with the UN.

"She currently faces 200 more floggings ... despite her suffering from distortions to her spine." Wafa's mother says her daughter, a 39-year-old mother of twin teens, maintains that it took 20 months for authorities to inform her of fraud charges after her 2009 arrest. Saudi Arabia has barred Wafa from outside contact since June, when the family publicized the case, says her mother, who adds that the dispute should have been handled in business court. Two million Egyptians live in Saudi Arabia, and human rights groups have long complained of injustice from officials, the Times notes.