Sami was the husband of Amira, a woman who accused Sayid of torturing her once while he was working for the Republican Guard. Sami lured Sayid into a trap by offering him a job as a chef in his restaraunt, Le Jardin Croissant Fertile, and then having his friends subdue Sayid. He questioned and roughed up Sayid, threatening to kill him if he did not confess. When Sayid later confessed to Amira, she told Sami she had made a mistake and should let Sayid go.
Sami is of Arabic origin, and its meaning is "on high, exalted."
Some of the tesselating arabic patterns on the wall in Sami's restaurant look like a Buddhist DHARMA wheel.