Estonian soldier pardoned in the Middle East

TALLINN - An Estonian soldier who was sentenced in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to a month in jail and 80 lashes for sexually harassing a policewoman while drunk has been pardoned, a defense official in Estonia said on April 16.

Korol was pardoned after he pleaded for greater leniency after an appeal court reduced his sentence for drinking alcohol from 80 lashes to 40 lashes. For the charge of sexually harassing the policewoman, the appeal court ordered Korol to pay a fine of 2,000 dirhams ($545). "This punishment is considered to have already been carried out as he has been in prison for more than 40 days, and each day in prison in the UAE is the equivalent of a fine of 100 dirhams," Major Peeter Tali, a spokesman for the Estonian defense forces, said.

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