A British IT worker is facing a six-month prison term for sticking a finger up at another driver in Dubai.
Jamil Ahmed Mukadam, 23, was arrested at the airport and charged with “offensive and insulting behaviour” for a holiday road rage incident on September 8.
Leicester Mercury reports:
Mr Ahmed was arrested at DXB airport as he was about to board a flight back to the UK on September 10.
He has held for two days at Bur Dubai police station before being released on bail pending further enquiries.
He has been banned from leaving the country.
Mr Ahmed was initially told he would be allowed to return home on September 17 but the authorities still have his passport.
His wife, who was with him in Dubai, has since returned to the UK.
He is being represented by law firm Detained in Dubai, while he waits for a court date.
Speaking to Detained in Dubai, he said: “I am worried about running out of money before I even get to court.
“No one plans to spend two months (or more) in hotels in Dubai.”
Radha Stirling, of Detained in Dubai, said: “He put the middle finger up. It is illegal for anyone to display what could be argued to be offensive or insulting behaviour.
“We have dealt with a number of cases where traffic frustration has led to detention.
“We caution visitors and expats that they could face criminal charges for behaviour that would be common in their own countries.
“The individual complainant would have took his number plate down and then the police had this on report so then he was detained at the airport.”
Offensive gestures are considered a public obscenity crime and the Federal Penal Law of 1987 in Dubai states that a prison sentence should be at least six months.
Ms Stirling added: “We hope that the courts in Dubai are lenient with their sentencing and issue a fine at worst.
“Having to go through this stressful time, awaiting a potential sentence and paying highly, is punishment enough.”
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