Islamic State terror recruiter’s wife appeals her conviction for refusing to stand for a judge
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- Islamic State ISIS is an Islamic extremist terrorist organization controlling territory in Iraq...[+]
Affected Countries: australia;
The wife of an ISIS extremist has appealed against her conviction for refusing to stand for a judge, claiming it violates her freedom of religious expression.
Moutia Elzahed, the wife of jailed terrorist recruiter Hamdi Alqudsi, was sentenced to 75 hours of community service after refusing to stand for a judge eight times.
The 50-year-old refused to acknowledge District Court Judge Audrey Balla at Sydney’s Downing Centre Court because she ‘only stands for Allah’ in 2016.
On Wednesday, she appeared in the New South Wales Supreme Court to fight her sentence.
Elzahed’s lawyer said her client didn’t stand because it contradicted her religious beliefs, The Daily Telegraph reported.
In May she was found guilty of eight counts of disrespectful behaviour in court.
She remained seated with her arms crossed when the landmark decision was first announced, making her the first person to be sentenced for the crimes.
Her barrister David Hume said she was not completely aware of respectful courtroom behaviour, like many members of the public.
‘It is most unlikely that parliament intended to criminalise innocent mistakes,’ he said on Wednesday.
He went on to say Elzahed’s failure to rise in no way impacted the administration of justice.
Ms Elzahed’s counsel added their client did not mean disrespect in her action during the civil trial in 2016.
Magistrate Carolyn Huntsman ruled earlier this year there was no evidence Elzahed was acting on a genuine religious belief or that Islamic beliefs compelled such behaviour.
Source: Daily Mail