A British woman facing jail for extra-marital sex after reporting an alleged gang rape on holiday in Dubai has told of her “nightmare” and said she’s “petrified”.
Zara-Jayne Moisey, 25, told police in the United Arab Emirates she was violently raped by two British men in the city last month.
But instead of being treated as a victim, Zara, from Widnes, who is single after splitting from her husband, was reportedly locked up on suspicion of extra-marital sex and later charged with the offence.
Her passport has been confiscated and she now faces a trial, claim her family and friends.
Her desperate family have now launched an online appeal to raise £25,000 for the legal fees needed to pay for her defence. So far nearly £15,000 has been raised.
Zara – has told of her “nightmare” ordeal and admitted she is “petrified” and missing her family.
Zara, now on bail in a safe house, sent a message to her dad Chris Moisey thanking people for her support.
“I want to say a huge thank you to everybody for supporting me. Without the loving, kind and supportive words I couldn’t get through the long days.
“It’s petrifying out here alone but I have to stay strong. There are many hurdles to cross and many emotional, fearful times ahead.”
The two alleged attackers are also understood to have been arrested and bailed.
Police in the country are understood to be investigating mobile phone footage of the alleged attack as investigations continue.
Zara was on holiday heading to Australia when the alleged attack took place.
In another message to supporters on Facebook, she wrote: “I’m trying to stay positive and focused.”
Writing about the support, she added: “This helps me a lot because it makes me realise that you are all so loving and supportive and I feel like I’m talking directly to each and every one of you.
“I’m so overwhelmed by the amount of progress going into helping support me financially and lovingly. There are some very special people out there that have surprised me beyond belief and have brought tears to my eyes with such appreciation.”
Zara, who has been practising yoga and volunteering at a local farm to try and stay calm, also wrote about an emotional goodbye with her mum.
“My mum also left to go back home this week. It was so hard saying goodbye and as I hugged her I said ‘I’m so sad because I don’t know when I’ll be able to hold onto you again’ we both cried but I told mum to be strong for the both of us.”
She finished the message by saying: “I have so much love and appreciation of those who touch my heart everyday as they continue to talk to me, support me and make me feel loved.
“Thank you to everyone who has donated…. my promise to you is to thank each and every individual at some point when this nightmare is over
“I miss my family so much. They send me pictures and there’s nothing better than that to make me smile.”
The Foreign Commonwealth Office has confirmed it is “supporting a British woman” will “remain in contact with her family.”
After posting an online appeal for help, Zara’s mum Sue Barber wrote: “Please help my daughter.
“She was raped while on holiday. She reported this to the police and now she is being held on the grounds of sexual activity outside marriage.
“We are not a rich family and cannot afford to pay for the defence she so desperately needs.
“I am going out of my mind with worry.”
Radha Stirling, founder and director of Detained in Dubai, said the nation’s treatment of rape victims is “tremendously disturbing”.
She said: “The UAE has a long history of penalising rape victims.
“It is still not safe for victims to report these crimes to the police without the risk of suffering a double punishment.
“Police regularly fail to differentiate between consensual intercourse and violent rape. Victims go to them expecting justice, and end up being prosecuted.
“They not only invalidate their victimisation, they actually punish them for it.”
A Foreign Commonwealth Office spokeswoman said: “We are supporting a British woman in relation to this case and will remain in contact with her family.”