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Death Sentence Hearing Postponed

Tue., Oct. 10, 1995

The appeal hearing for a Filipina maid sentenced to death for killing her 85-year-old employer was adjourned until Oct. 30 after a closed session Monday.

Sarah Balabagan, a 16-year-old Muslim from the southern Philippines city of Cotabato, was led into the courtroom in handcuffs and placed in an iron cage until the judge summoned her.

A senior official of the United Arab Emirates’ Information Ministry said Balabagan was to testify on details of the alleged rape attempt by her employer.

Balabagan was sentenced to death in the same courthouse last month for the murder in Al-Ain of Almas Mohammad al-Baloushi. She said she had killed him when he tried to rape her at knifepoint.

Balabagan’s case has become a cause celebre, both in the Philippines and the United Arab Emirates, which has been surprised at the negative publicity it has generated.

Philippines President Fidel Ramos has dispatched several envoys to help with Balabagan’s appeal.

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