A popular Egyptian belly dancer has been sentenced to 3 years in prison over claims of 'inciting debauchery' on TikTok
- The high-profile Egyptian belly dancer Sama El-Masry has been sentenced to three years in prison over claims of "inciting debauchery and immorality" on social media, the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram reported.
- El-Masry was also fined 300,000 Egyptian pounds, or $18,600.
- The Egyptian celebrity denied the allegations and said the content in question was shared from her stolen phone without her consent.
- El-Masry has said she would appeal the ruling.
Sama El-Masry, a high-profile Egyptian belly dancer, has been sentenced to three years in prison and handed a fine of 300,000 Egyptian pounds, or $18,600, over claims of "inciting debauchery and immorality" on social media, according to the Egyptian newspaper Al-Ahram.
The Egyptian celebrity was detained in April as part of a government crackdown on Instagram and TikTok influencers deemed sexually suggestive.
El-Masry denied the allegations and said the content in question was shared from her phone without consent after it was stolen last year.
Cairo's Misdemeanours Economic Court deemed Saturday that she had violated family principles and values in Egypt and used her social-media account to commit "immorality," Reuters reported.
"There is a huge difference between freedom and debauchery," John Talaat, a member of parliament who asked for legal action against El-Masry and other female TikTokers, said, according to Reuters.
El-Masry has said she will appeal the ruling.
Several female influencers in Egypt have been accused of "inciting debauchery" since the country introduced a new cybercrime law in 2018 that allowed the government to censor online posts and monitor communication.
Entessar el-Saeed, a women's-rights lawyer who is the head of the Cairo Center for Development and Law, told Reuters: "Our conservative society is struggling with technological changes which have created a completely different environment and mindsets."
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