DUBAI // The Juvenile and Family Prosecution section investigated in 665 cases in 2010, most of which involved assault, theft and disputes, officials said this morning.
Mohammad Ali Rustom, head of the section, which launched in 2009, said juveniles were involved in 306 cases last year; 348 involved marital disputes and family assault cases.
Only 11 cases involved both juveniles and family disputes, he noted.
Mr Rustom said most of the suspects in juvenile cases were males – 470 in all – while just 39 were females.
“All of the juveniles that were involved in cases were referred to social workers to study their social status,” he said, adding that both suspects and victims were included.
The most common charges in juvenile cases were theft and assault. Family cases were dominated by assault comprising couples insulting each other, about 70 per cent of the entire number of family cases, Mr Rustom said.
Only two attempted murder cases have been investigated since the section was launched, he said.
The prosecution has managed to reach settlements in 56.5 per cent of family cases, meaning they are not referred to court, Mr Rustom said, noting that this is the role of the Social Care Section of the prosecution.
“Of our main achievements was the setting up of a juveniles and family separate court with the co-operation of Dubai Criminal Court,” he said.
Alongside male prosecutors, seven women now work with the Juvenile and Family Prosecution, said Thoraya al Zarouni, a prosecutor.
She said that brought the total number of female prosecutors in Dubai to 17, 10 of whom joined in 2009, and seven of whom joined last year.
Ms Al Zarouni said a female prosecutor was more capable of connecting with women.
“Investigating with a juvenile is one of the toughest investigations a prosecutor can carry out,” Mr Rustom said, explaining that a juvenile may create a fictional incident, which confuses the prosecutor.
He noted that children younger than 16 are not imprisoned, but admitted to a care centre, while those between 16 and 18 may be sent to prison according to the nature of charge at the judge’s discretion.