U.S. man: Videos show torture by UAE royal
Texan was advisor until he says business relationship began to deteriorate
WASHINGTON - As a trusted adviser to a member of United Arab Emirates royal family, Texas businessman Bassam Nabulsi says he safeguarded the sheik's most important documents: financial records, investment documents, and videotapes showing the sheik torturing people with a cattle prod and a spiked plank.
When the business relationship began to deteriorate, Nabulsi says, he also was imprisoned for months and tortured by jailers trying to get the tapes back.
Now, the tapes could become evidence in a federal lawsuit against Sheik Issa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, a son of the late UAE president and brother of Abu Dhabi's crown prince.
The lawsuit and the tapes could prove embarrassing to the UAE, a U.S. ally that promotes itself as a pro-Western nation catering to business travelers and tourists.
The tapes have not been made public but The Associated Press viewed 11 still frames from one of the videos. They showed a man who appeared to be Sheik Issa beating another man with lumber, firing an automatic weapon into the sand around him and forcing an apparent cattle prod into his anus. The victim also appeared to have been partly run over by a SUV and had salt poured on his wounds.
Suing for millions
Lawyers said the video also showed the victim's genitals being lit on fire. They said the abuse began because the sheik felt he had been overcharged in a grain deal.
© Janet Crain
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