Kuwait increases jail time for camera phone abusers

Camera phone users in Kuwait convicted of taking and distributing anonymous pictures will face longer jail terms, after the country’s Legislative Parliamentary Committee approved a government recommendation to increase the penalties for such crimes.

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By  Matthew Wade Published  May 4, 2005

Camera phone users in Kuwait convicted of taking and distributing anonymous pictures will face longer jail terms, after the country’s Legislative Parliamentary Committee approved a government recommendation to increase the penalties for such crimes. According to Kuwait News Agency (KUNA), the newly agreed sanctions include two years in jail or a 2000KD fine for taking pictures without the knowledge and consent of others, five years in the slammer for illegally distributing and sharing these pictures (via Bluetooth or MMS for example), and 10 years for those found using such files as a means of extortion and other so-called ‘immoral practices’. Kuwait is far from the only country in the region to look at tackling camera phone related crimes. The UAE's Khaleej Times newspaper recently quoted a “police source” as saying that people who use their phones to send pornographic images or indecent SMS messages will soon face imprisonment, while in Saudi Arabia a law has been proposed – and seems likely to be endorsed – that hands a 12-year jail sentence, SR100,000 fine and 1,000 lashes to people convicted of using a camera phone to circulate pornographic photographs of women. Last December, the Kingdom overturned a previous ban on the import and sale of mobile camera phones.

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