DUBAI // A jilted lover who tried to blackmail a woman he met online was sentenced in his absence yesterday to three years in jail.
NA, 34, who was born in Ras al Khaimah but has no nationality, demanded Dh250,000 from the 31-year-old Emirati woman unless she agreed to marry him.
The couple met on a marriage website in 2008, an earlier hearing was told. "I posted on my profile the things I need from a mate and he contacted me. One of my conditions was that he had to be a UAE national," the woman told prosecutors.
Their online relationship blossomed into phone calls and, later, meetings. "I told him to try to get a higher degree as he was only a college graduate. He did not have any money, so I started giving him money to complete his Masters," she said.
The woman, a manager at a government department, stopped contacting NA after she discovered he was stateless. "After a year, I was shocked to discover he was a Bidoon. I told him that my family would not accept him and that my main condition was that my husband be Emirati," she said.
NA proposed marriage to the women's family but was turned down. After another suitor approached her, NA began threatening her. "He used to stalk me and stay in front of my office until I left," the woman said. "He called me, and texted me, and chased me continuously."
On one occasion, NA chased the woman's car and told her to stop or he would throw pictures of her on to the street.
Text messages recovered from NA's phone and laptop contained threats. "I do not care how far you take this," he said in one text. "I want to hurt you as you hurt me and I will not give up."
If NA is found and serves his sentence, he will be deported afterwards.
When a stateless person is sentenced to deportation, his origin is investigated by public prosecutors and prison authorities while he is in jail, legal experts said yesterday.
If it cannot be confirmed, a new request must be made to the court to release him from prison and not deport him.