x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Student assaults labourer with teddy bear

A student who assaulted a labourer with a stolen Dh20 teddy bear before kicking him in the groin is sentenced to three months in prison.

DUBAI // A student who assaulted a labourer with a stolen Dh20 teddy bear before kicking him in the groin was today given a suspended three-month prison term.

The Dubai Criminal Court heard that the labourer, a 26-year-old from Pakistan, saw the student stealing the bear from a shop in February.

"I was walking in Muraqabat near Al Ghurair Centre at 1.30am when I saw him stealing the teddy bear," said the labourer. "I tried to stop him but he hit me on the head with the teddy bear and then kicked me in the genitals."

The labourer said he fell to the ground and that the student continued to kick him until a friend answered his cries for help.

AA, a 20-year-old student from the Comoros Islands, denied charges of both theft and assault, insisting he found the bear on the ground on the way to his car.

His lawyer argued that no grown man would risk prosecution for a Dh20 cuddly toy and urged the court to consider the whereabouts of the bear when it was found by the student.

"The teddy bear was in the street, not inside the shop," the lawyer said. "There is no crime in grabbing a damaged teddy bear found on the ground."

The prison term is suspended for a period of three years. If the student repeats either offence within that time he will serve the three-month term.

salamir@thenational.ae