A judge has refused to hear evidence from a Muslim woman, the wife of a Islamic extremist, because she refused to remove her veil in court.
Moutia Elzahed, one of two women married to convicted criminal and Islamic extremist Hamdi Alqudsi, is suing the police alleging they punched her and called her a “bitch” during the Operation Appleby terrorism raids at her Revesby home on September 18, 2014. (and) is seeking compensation for “assault and battery, wrongful arrest, false imprisonment and intimidation”.
…NSW District Court Judge Audrey Balla would not allow her to take the stand while she was wearing her veil. But she still refused to take it off.
Ms Elzahed’s lawyer Clive Evatt argued his client was not allowed to show her face to any man outside her family for religious reasons.
Judge Balla gave Ms Elzahed the option to have the court closed while she gave evidence or to do so in another room, or via video link. Mr Evatt then argued that the options were not suitable because male legal counsels would still be able to see Ms Elzahed’s face.
Ms Elzahed also refused to stand for Judge Balla when the judicial officer entered and exited the court.
Ms Elzahed has accused police of punching her during the September 2014 dawn raid and
It is understood Ms Elzahed told reporters outside court that being told she couldn’t give evidence was “unfair”.
… she failed to turn up to the fourth day of the hearing this morning. Her lawyer Zali Burrows declined to say why Ms Elzahed did not appear.
She is joined in the lawsuit by her husband Hamdi Alqudsi and her sons Hamza George, 17, and Abdulla George, 17. Today, two NSW police officers who handcuffed Ms Elzahed’s teenage sons during a terrorism raid on their Sydney home have denied slamming either of the boys into a cupboard and window and calling them terrorists, a court has heard. Sen Cons Young said he only used “enough force to put the handcuffs on” one of the boys, who was struggling and resisting.
Since the raid Alqudsi has been convicted of helping seven men travel to Syria to fight with Islamist rebels in the civil war. He was jailed for eight years with a non-parole period of six years.