x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Man who kissed girl who 'reminded him of dead daughter' jailed

Man will be deported after serving out his one-year prison term.

DUBAI // A man who said he kissed an 11-year-old girl because she reminded him of his dead daughter was today sentenced to a year in prison.

RM, a 33-year-old from India, hugged the girl, who is also from India, and kissed her on her cheeks and lips as she was returning home from school on December 15 last year.

The incident happened shortly after the girl arrived at the apartment block her family lives in. Her mother told her to take the stairs to their apartment in case the lift broke down.

"She called me a few minutes later crying and saying a man had followed and harassed her," said the mother. "She informed me a man told her he loved her then forcefully kissed her."

The mother looked in her daughter's school bag and found a note from the man with his phone number, asking the girl to call him but not to tell anyone.

The mother called police who arrested the man in Jumeirah.

He denied the charge at the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance, saying that she reminded him of his daughter who died when she was the same age. "I kissed her like I would kiss my late daughter," he said.

He will be deported after serving his prison term.

salamir@thenational.ae