Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 24 March 2018

Man jailed for touching girl, 12, who was alone on flight to Dubai

The Sri Lankan admitted molesting the young Singaporean girl who was sat next to him sleeping on a flight from Singapore to Dubai.

DUBAI // A Sri Lankan salesman was sentenced to one year in jail after he admitted molesting a 12-year-old Singaporean girl who sat next to him on a plane.

Dubai Criminal Court heard that on November 5 last year, the girl, S K, was on a Sri Lankan Airlines flight from Singapore to Dubai on her own.

When the cabin lights were dimmed, she fell asleep but soon woke up to find A N touching her thigh.

“I pushed his hand away and told him not to repeat it, then fell asleep again,” said the girl.

She said she then awoke again to find him touching her chest and private parts.

“He even tried to unbutton my trousers but couldn’t. I felt so scared as I was alone on the plane,” she said.

“I didn’t know what to do, especially as he kept repeating what he did all the way to Dubai,” she said, adding that he only stopped when the cabin lights were turned on.

Afterwards, he tried to start a conversation with her and, when the plane landed at Dubai International Airport, the defendant stalked her. She spotted a police officer and told him what had happened.

When the man was arrested, police found he had 1.97 grams of marijuana on him.

He was charged with molestation, consuming alcohol and drugs possession.

The girl’s father was waiting at the airport and was surprised to see her being accompanied to him by police.

“She was crying and I got scared,” said engineer S P, 52. “I asked the police officer with her what had happened and he said I would soon know.

“Then on the way to the police office he told me a man had molested my daughter.”

In court last month, the Sri Lankan confessed to all charges and requested the court’s mercy.

He was handed one year in jail, to be followed by deportation.