x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

British yacht owner fined for mocking coastguard in Dubai

His trial at the Misdemeanours Court heard he made the offensive gesture when two coastguards arrived to investigate complaints that he was taking pictures of people at a nearby beach on the Palm Jumeirah using his iPhone.

DUBAI // A British businessman who mocked coastguards by showing him the soles of his shoe was fined Dh5,000 yesterday.

S?B, 48, was found guilty of mocking the officer, but cleared of fishing in a banned area.

The Misdemeanours Court heard that he made the offensive gesture when two coastguards arrived to investigate complaints that he was taking pictures with his iPhone of people at a nearby beach on the Palm Jumeirah.

“I asked him for the yacht’s ownership records, which he handed over willingly, but when I asked him to follow us to the coastguard department he refused. He then mocked me by raising his foot in my face four times,” recalled one of the coastguards, S?A, 40, an Emirati.

The coastguards also claimed the yacht owner threatened to report them to his embassy.

Asked to accompany the coastguard boat to shore, the yacht owner tried to delay the journey.

“The defendant kept stalling and saying that his engine was too hot for him to drive any faster,” recalled the second coastguard, M?S. “It took us three and a half hours to reach the coastguard department, when it should take only half an hour.”

The yacht owner claimed that he had complied with the coastguards’ orders to stop fishing.

“When they asked me to follow them, I asked them what I had done wrong but they did not answer me,” he told the court.

salamir@thenational.ae