Page last updated at 17:15 GMT, Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Saudi Arabia upholds 'sex boast' conviction

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A Saudi Arabian appeals court has upheld a sentence of five years in jail and 1,000 lashes for a man who boasted on TV of his sex life, reports say.

Mazen Abdul Jawad was convicted in October of immoral behaviour under the country's strict Islamic law code.

Sentences of two years in jail and 300 lashes were upheld for three friends of his who were also on the programme.

They appeared on a programme aired last July on the Beirut-based Lebanese Broadcasting Corporation (LBC).

The men can appeal again to a higher court.

The Saudi offices of LBC were shut in August last year, ahead of Abdul Jawad's conviction.

On the show, called Red Lines, Abdul Jawad spoke about picking up women before he was married and displayed sex toys on camera.

The 32-year-old father-of-four's interview prompted around 200 complaints from Saudi viewers and calls for him to be punished.

Saudi Arabia is one of the most conservative societies in the Arab world.

Abdul Jawad later apologised, saying producers at the TV station had tricked him into airing some of his stories.

His lawyer, Sulaiman Jumaie, objected that LBC's owners and managers were not charged over the incident.

Saudi billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal is a majority shareholder in LBC.

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