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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 19 September 2018

British tourist facing jail for road rage insult fears Dubai ban 

Jamil Ahmed Mukadam was detained and released on bail for making a rude gesture to another driver while driving in Dubai

Jamil Ahmed Mukadam was arrested when he returned to Dubai on holiday in September. Jeffrey E Biteng/ The National
Jamil Ahmed Mukadam was arrested when he returned to Dubai on holiday in September. Jeffrey E Biteng/ The National

A British man facing jail in Dubai for making a rude gesture at a fellow motorist has said he fears he will never be allowed to visit the UAE again once his case is over.

Jamil Ahmed Mukadam, a 23-year-old IT worker from Leicester, stuck his middle finger up at a driver while making his way to Dubai airport in a rental car with his wife in February.

It is thought a complaint was made by the man travelling in the other car with his wife and a child. Mr Mukadam's car was traced back to the rental car company, which had his passport details.

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British tourist faces prosecution over alleged middle finger insult on Dubai road

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When the Briton travelled back to Dubai for another holiday with his wife this month, he was arrested upon arrival at immigration control and detained for two days.

Having been charged and released on bail, Mr Mukadam, who is staying in a hotel, is waiting to hear whether his case will be going to court.

“I am very stressed out at the moment and have no idea how this will end,” he told The National.

Mr Mukadam said he was particularly concerned about the prospect of not being allowed to visit the Emirates again, as it is a country he loves.

“I visit the UAE regularly. It’s a very relaxing place and I love the halal food. I have been here more than 10 times,” he said.

Radha Stirling, of law firm Stirling Haigh, who is assisting Mr Mukadam, said there was no maximum sentence for an offence of this kind.

“At the moment, he is worried that he will be deported and banned from returning to a country that he loves,” she said.

“We are hoping that, in line with other cases of a similar nature, that he is only fined and not banned from returning.”

Ms Stirling, who has previously represented clients on similar charges, said that Mr Mukadam would plead guilty if the case went to court.

“I had a Danish client and he was ultimately fined but there have been other cases where people have received three-month sentences or so,” she said.

“He is going to plead guilty if it ends up going to court, so hopefully they’ll be lenient.”

Ms Stirling said that while authorities in Dubai had not been able to contact the complainant since Mr Mukadam’s detention, the case was still able to go ahead.

She added: “They [the complainant] haven’t responded to police requests in the past week and a half. However, because they have already given the complaint and a statement, the case could go ahead if they do not reply.”

Dubai Government Media Office said the "complainant considered the act disrespectful and a humiliating gesture towards him and his wife and kids".

"Dubai Police referred the case to Dubai Public Prosecution as complainant refused all attempts for amicable reconciliation," a statement on Twitter read.

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