Judge Threatens Legal Action In Response To Muslim Woman's Disrespectful Courtroom Conduct

As the Islamic State continues to commit atrocities across the Middle East and North Africa, it’s easy to see why people are angered when Muslims defy Western laws while living in a Western country. A similar issue is coming to a head in a legal court in Sydney, Australia, after a Muslim woman, Moutia Elzahed, refused to stand up for the serving judge, telling the court that “she won't stand for anyone except Allah.”

Ms. Elzahed is a strict Muslim and is married to a man named Hamdi Alqudsi, with two sons. Mr. Alqudsi has been convicted of recruiting and assisting people for the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), helping foreigners travel to Iraq and Syria to fight for the terrorist organization.

Mr. Alqudsi was arrested by Australian counter-terrorism forces during a surprise raid of his home. During the raid, Ms. Elzahed and the couple’s two sons were in the house. Ms. Alqudsi alleges that, during the raid, she was punched in the head by police and her son was forced against a cupboard.

After the raid, Ms. Elzahed decided to sue the Commonwealth of Australia and New South Wales (NSW), appearing in front of the Sydney District Court and accusing Sydney police and counter-terrorism forces of assault and battery.

The serving official, Judge Audrey Balla noticed that Ms. Elzahed did not stand for the arrival of the judge. During a morning tea break, Judge Balla asked Ms. Elzahed’s lawyer, Clive Evatt, why his client was refusing to obey Australia’s judicial rules, especially considering the nature of her attendance at Court. “I’m afraid so your Honour,” replied Mr. Evatt. After Judge Balla pressed the lawyer for more information, he admitted that it was because of “religious reasons,” telling the judge, “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.”

Judge Balla was unsurprised by the revelation and was unimpressed by the embarrassed lawyer, asking him if his client was aware of an offence recently introduced by the NSW State Government - if found guilty of disrespecting NSW judicial officials or the rules of the Court, an individual can be fined up to $1000 and imprisoned for 14 days. Judge Balla gently reminded Mr. Evatt of the newly introduced offence, telling him that any decision would be passed by another judge but "Each occasion she doesn't do it may be a separate offence.”

One week ago, Judge Balla dismissed Ms. Elzahed’s statements to the Court, advising her to remove her niqab, a religious garment that completely covers a woman’s full body.

The divisive legal case is gathering more and more media attention as Australians become increasingly outraged by the Muslim woman’s contempt of the court system and implicit support of her husband’s actions.

One online commentator took to the Dailymail, writing: “Respect the country you live in, it's laws, it's culture, it's people.” Another Dailymail commenter encapsulated the feelings of many, saying: “If anyone of any religion believes that their religion means that you have to disrespect the laws of the country of where you reside maybe they need to explore other countries where their religion is law because here in Australia religion isn’t law."

Source: Daily Mail
Photo: The Daily Telegraph

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