A British woman who alleged that she was raped in Dubai on New Year’s Eve has had her passport confiscated and may face a jail sentence after she was charged with having sex outside marriage with her fiance.

The 23-year-old woman, a Muslim from London, of Pakistani origin, said that she was attacked by a man who is understood to be a worker in the hotel where she had been drinking with her fiance to celebrate their engagement during a three-day holiday in Dubai.

When she reported to the police that she had been raped, she and her partner, 44, were themselves jailed for sex outside marriage, which is illegal under the emirate’s laws. Unmarried couples are not allowed to share hotel rooms or live together, although many establishments turn a blind eye. The couple were also charged with being drunk outside licensed premises.

The alleged assault on the woman took place at the upmarket Address Hotel in the Dubai Marina district.

After drinking heavily to celebrate the marriage proposal that evening, the woman passed out in the toilets, where she says that she was followed by a member of staff and attacked. It is unclear if the alleged rape is being investigated by police. The woman’s alleged attacker has denied rape and has claimed that sex was consensual. He has also been charged with illegal sex outside marriage.

A spokesperson for the Address declined to comment yesterday. Dubai police also declined to comment.

The woman’s fiance was unaware of the incident and took her home, but when she recalled the attack the next morning they went to the police.

It is reported that the police focused on the woman’s drinking and her sexual preferences. It is claimed that standard procedures in alleged rape cases were not followed, although legal sources in Dubai dispute this. A blood test proved that the woman had been drinking. The couple were arrested, charged and jailed overnight. They have been released on bail and their passports have been taken away.

The woman has been advised to drop the rape allegation, admit that she was drunk and marry her fiance immediately if she wants to go home. She told The Sun: “I always dreamed of a big family wedding in Britain, but now I just want to get married so I can get out of here.”