Wife of suspect in serial rapes rejects calls for seeking divorce

Jeddah, July 01: The wife of the suspect who was recently arrested in connection with at least 13 kidnappings and brutal rape attacks on little girls has denied rumors that she wants a divorce.

While claiming that her husband is innocent of all the crimes attributed to him, she appealed to security authorities to release him at the earliest opportunity, Al-Watan newspaper reported.

The woman said there was no truth in the allegations that her husband had committed the attacks.

The suspect is a 42-year-old Saudi schoolteacher with five children. Jeddah police recently arrested him in connection with the series of attacks. He has since been charged with kidnapping and raping 13 girls since 2008. The man is now in the custody of the Public Prosecution and Investigation Commission.

The woman, whose name was not disclosed, told the newspaper that she and her children are now living in misery.

“As a loyal wife, I am still holding fast to the father of my five children. During our married life spanning over a 19-year period, he never uttered even a single word of abuse or reprimanded me even once. My husband loved his family, neighbors and colleagues,” she said.

The woman also noted that her husband always used to advise their children to fear Allah and behave around neighbors and relatives in the best manner possible.

“He warned them against doing harm to anybody either at school or in the neighborhood. I am fully confident that my husband, as a pious man performing prayers regularly, is totally innocent of the crimes he is accused of,” she said.

The woman also drew attention to the fact that her husband had a financial dispute with a man. “That man is now accusing my husband of raping his daughter. The dispute started after he had borrowed SR200,000 from my husband. For two years, the man has been refusing to clear the debt,” she said.

The woman noted that their son, who is a second year intermediate student, has been suffering from mental problems since the arrest.

“It has been damaging to our reputation because my husband’s name has been circulating on the Internet. Our family has been targeted with damaging reports even though no crimes have been committed. So far, there has been no substantial evidence to implicate my husband,” she claimed.

The woman has also vehemently refuted accusations that her husband forced her and their children to stay away from their home one weekend so he could bring in kidnapped victims.

“I never left his house or was separated from him all through our married life. He also did not want to lead a separate life in those days,” she said, adding that he faced no disciplinary action during his 18-year-long career as a teacher.

Responding to allegations that the teacher took his victims to the terrace of their residential building, the woman said that was impossible as her father–in-law lived with them.

“There are also several other apartments that are occupied. How is it possible to take anyone without being spotted?” she asked.

She maintained that she had never spoken to any of the media.

“The rumors about the reported misconduct of my husband with family members are baseless. I am now planning to abandon our house and live away from the public eye,” she said.

The woman also confirmed that she had received several SMS asking her to leave her husband.

“I will never do that. I can neither abandon my husband in such a perilous situation nor shun my duty to him,” she said, voicing fears about possible attacks on her children.