x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Road-rage official caught on camera remains in custody, Dubai prosecutors say

Dubai's deputy attorney general says the man who was beaten is protected under the UAE constitution.

DUBAI // A government official who was arrested after his road rage was caught on camera remains in custody, according to public prosecutors.

The Emirati man was seen beating an Asian driver with his agal in a video clip that was loaded to YouTube on Monday.

"Deira prosecution started the investigation after we received the complaint from police," said Yousif Hassan Al Mutawa, the deputy attorney general at Dubai Public Prosecution.

"We showed him the video that circulated on YouTube and questioned him. We have also asked the victim to come in for questioning so we can hear his side of the story."

He added: "Law in the UAE is above everybody and all are equal according to UAE constitution. This means the foreigner has all his rights and our law protects him from his attacker."

Dubai Police confirmed through their Twitter account on Wednesday night that they had arrested the man responsible for filming the incident and uploading it to YouTube. No further details were immediately available.

The Emirati man, a senior government employee, was caught on camera earlier this week beating an unidentified Asian man with his agal and punching him before a bystander stepped in to stop him.

The fight arose after the Asian man supposedly clipped the Emirati's Toyota Land Cruiser near Deira City Centre but failed to stop his vehicle.

The video of the incident was uploaded to YouTube on Monday evening and quickly went viral before being pulled offline by the user on Tuesday morning.

At least two copies of the footage were still circulating yesterday, attracting comments including one by a user named Hind Khoory, who said: "This individual's behaviour is very wrong. His nationality doesn't matter at all and he does not represent the people of our country. Each person is responsible for his own action."

Under Article 339 of the UAE penal code, assault that does not result in serious injury carries a maximum sentence of one year in prison and a fine of up to Dh10,000.

The manager of Modern Stationery, the company that owns the van that the Asian man was driving, has refused to comment on the matter saying they are "working it out with the police".

salamir@thenational.ae

with reporting by Mohammed Al Khan