Australian court convicts Muslim woman for failing to stand

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The wife of an Islamic State group recruiter has given the militants’ single-finger salute outside a Sydney court after becoming the first person convicted under a new state law criminalizing the refusal to stand for a judge.

Moutia Elzahed defiantly remained seated on Friday in the Downing Centre Local Court after magistrate Carolyn Huntsman delivered the landmark decision.

The 50-year-old was found guilty of nine charges of disrespectful behavior during previous court hearings she was involved in. She will be sentenced in June.


New South Wales introduced the law in 2016 after several Muslim defendants refused to stand for judges on religious grounds.

Elzahed is married to Hamdi Alqudsi, who was sentenced in 2016 to eight years in prison for helping young Australians travel to Syria to fight for extremists.

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