x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Guards deny using excessive force

They say a man tried to fight his way into the site they were guarding, and they simply defended themselves.


ABU DHABI // Two private security guards said in court yesterday they had been charged with assault for defending themselves while on duty.
AIA and AW, both Egyptians, appeared before the Abu Dhabi Criminal Court of First Instance charged with physical assault. The two worked as private guards at an unspecified site in Mussafah.
They told the court they were victims of assault by a Pakistani man who tried to force his way into the site of which they were in charge.
Forensic tests showed that the Pakistani had suffered a broken bone before the alleged incident, but that it was broken again during the fight.

AW said he was surprised when he was told he was implicated in the case. He said his only role in the incident was breaking up the fight.
“I was supposed to be a witness, not a defendant,” AW told the court. “It was only the following day that I was told by prosecutors that I was charged.”
On October 25, 2010, AIA told the court, the Pakistani man tried to enter the site, but they denied him access because he did not present clearance.
“He asked to see my supervisor, but I told him he should deal with me,” AIA told the court. “He then held me by my neck and tore off my shirt and my ID.”
AIA said he pushed the man away after he turned more violent.
"He fell on the pavement,” AIA testified.
AIA cited four guidelines for legally using force in self defense as a private security officer. First, if there was an apparent harm or serious crime against the guard, their belongings or against another person or their belongings, force may be justified. Second, a guard must not have enough time to report the incident to authorities before harm occurs. Third, there must be no other option but force. Finally, a guard’s use of force should be in proportion with the seriousness of the attack.
The next hearing will be January 25.