x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Telephone call drug conviction earns four-year sentence

Man tells court he simply phoned ex-roommates as they were being investigated; his lawyer says the warrants are invalid.

DUBAI // A man was sentenced to four years in prison for drug consumption this morning, although he and his attorney argued the only evidence against him was a phone call to his friends.

The 24-year-old Egyptian MY, a manager at a private company, was convicted by the Criminal Court of First Instance of smoking hashish with his friends on April 22. He said he happened to call them while officers were investigating them.

"I didn't smoke anything, your honour – all that happened is that I called my ex-roommates to say goodbye while the police were with them. Police asked them about my identity, and they arrested me," MY told the court.

His defence lawyer also argued the results of the forensics report were not accurate, and the arrest warrant and inspection warrants were not valid because they were issued after the actual arrest.

"My client has never smoked hashish in his life and he is a reputable man. His only fault was to call his friends," the lawyer told Judge Hamad Abdul Latif.

MY will be deported after serving his prison term.