A Sharjah court recently sentenced an Arab woman to one year in jail after she was found guilty of selling her 13-year-old daughter's virginity for 50,000 dirhams ($13,611) and a gold necklace, Emarat Al Youm reported.
The woman, who had been on trial for months, will also be deported from the UAE after serving her sentence. Three accomplices who took part in the crime received the same punishment in court.
The case dates back to Oct. 2018, when the mother got arrested after advertising her daughter's virginity among friends and relatives.
At the time, authorities were informed of a possible human trafficking case and sent an undercover police officer pretending to be a buyer to meet up with the daughter at a hotel.
The undercover officer paid 50,000 dirhams ($13,611) to the mother's accomplices, who also solicited money in exchange for sexual favors.
Sharjah Police then organized an ambush and successfully arrested the woman and her accomplices.
During interrogations, the defendants admitted to their crimes and were charged with human trafficking and sexual exploitation.
After the arrests took place, the woman's daughter testified against her and told investigators that her mother, who was a sex worker, had forced her to meet a man at the hotel in exchange for money.
Emirati human trafficking laws are strict
Emirati law stipulates a minimum fine of 100,000 dirhams ($27,223) and a minimum of five years in prison for human trafficking.
The penalty could reach a life sentence if the victim is a child or a person with special needs.
According to the law, "human trafficking includes all forms of sexual exploitation, engaging others in prostitution, servitude, forced labor, organ-trafficking, coerced service, enslavement, begging and quasi-slavery practices."
The UAE has been working to combat human trafficking through legislative amendments as well as awareness programs.
In 2015, the Dubai Judicial Institute and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime launched an anti-trafficking diploma, which teaches employees investigative skills, along with methods to protect and rehabilitate victims.
As a result, the number of human trafficking cases in the country dropped from 25 to 16 between 2016 and 2017, according to The National.