Australian Sentenced To Saudi Lashing Returns Home

Published January 13, 2012 5:45AM (EST)

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — An Australian man who received 75 lashes in Saudi Arabia after being convicted of blasphemy has returned home.

Mansor Almaribe of southern Victoria state arrived back in Australia on Friday. He told reporters he was happy to be home but was tired after his ordeal.

Almaribe was detained in the city of Medina in November while making the Muslim pilgrimage of hajj. Family members say Saudi officials accused him of insulting the companions of the Prophet Muhammad. That is considered a violation of Saudi Arabia's strict blasphemy laws.

He was originally sentenced to 500 lashes and a year in a Saudi Arabian jail. But Australian officials pleaded for leniency and the sentence was reduced to 75 lashes.

By Salon Staff

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