Sudan: A judge convicts a Christian woman with her little baby and imprisoned her for two months and a fine for possession of four glasses of wine.
This event took place On august 13, 2020, in one of the capital side areas known as Hajj Yousif city located on East Nile locality, Khartoum State. Mary Jashat Sammuel, 36 year old mother of three children. She was raided by the Sudanese public order policemen, due to the accusation of possessing four bottles of alcohol that were seized in her home.
She was transferred to the Al-Fayha police station, without any warrant or any issued legitimate / legal statements from the prosecution’s office to explain the context. The prosecution issued a release of her regular guarantee, under the pretext of a search warrant, because this is abuse of the Sudanese criminal procedures law, but the duty officer refused to release her. On the evening of the same day she sentenced two months imprisonment with her baby, penalty 50,000 SDG equivalent to 400$ and for violating Article 79 of the Criminal Code, according to what was stated in the court’s verdict wording. According to, lawyers declared that since Articles 78 and 79 were amended of the Criminal Code of 1991 Amendment 2020 and published in the gazette on last July, More than 50 Christian women were tried and convicted on the charge of dealing alcohol. With Christians by magistrate court 1 judge of the Public Order Court in Haji Yousif, called Haitham Abdulrahman Al-Hassan.
As well the constitution’s legitimate amendments issued last July13, 2020 by the Sudanese Minister of Justice Nasreddin Abdel Bari and approved by the Chairman of the Sovereignty Council, Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, allowed non-Muslims to circulate and consume alcohol on condition that no disturbance is caused or consumed in public places. Such amendments were effectively canceled , and some of the most controversial legal articles and their sources for personal freedoms, religious distinction, a matter that met with widespread popular satisfaction among the Sudanese, especially human rights organizations, feminist movement, and revolutionaries.
On august 15, 2020, at 11am, in Omdurman prison, DNMD visited to Mary Summel told him said that : lord judge’s Haitham Abdul Rahman call me in the his office after all the people were left , sent me the policeman I go to him and he said to me, entered here and I entered with small baby another one big son he began to crumble at me and shout me ,said that to my son you are lawyer, I said why he is my son and my boy is standing with me because I am like a mother, and I said why, judge said that : if you are Your mother has fallen into a problem like this, and you have gone to a lawyer to do what?. told her that I had sentenced her to a fine of 50,000 thousand and two months in prison because, she had sought help from a defense lawyer, which prompted him to increase the fine from 20,000 to 50,000 SDG, and the prison period from Two weeks to two months; this was in front of the court police officers inside his office. This position, which was issued by the judge of the first instance at Hajj Youssef Court, is considered.
- Darfur Network for Monitoring and Documentation (DNMD), considered an extension of the record of human rights violations against Christians and non-Christians in Sudan. In spite of the legal amendments that have not dried up the ink flow that has been amended with it, as well as an explicit challenge by the previous regime within the judiciary that did not affect the work of the dismantling committees despite their importance in achieving the demands of the revolution. With its iconic symbol for freedom, peace and justice.
- DNMD, calls on the transitional government to practice the same and to respect its immediate obligations to protect transitional constitutional rights of Non-Muslims. They are allowed to trade and consume alcohol on condition as it is stated within the constitution , “ no disturbance occurs or consumed in public places” since this was mentioned in the constitution, the non-Muslims have their god given rights to consume alcohol as long as it does dispute the constitution. We urge the transitional Government of Sudan to fulfil its duties to protect all Sudanese citizens equally. Such steps could only happen when the government takes urgent measures to release the woman with her baby from prison and the government must do it.
- DNMD, appeal to the judges in Sudan to respect rights of the defendant because, this is abuse of human rights and the Criminal Procedure Law of 1991 – which guaranteed the right of the accused to have a lawyer defend him – in Article 135 (3).