x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Was honeymoon bride’s death murder? UK widower forced to stay in Dubai as chief suspect

British former motorcycling champ held in Dubai after his bride fell to her death from a high-rise hotel remains in the city as prosecutors decide whether to charge him with murder.

DUBAI // A man whose bride fell to her death from a fourth-floor hotel balcony on their honeymoon is being investigated for murder seven months after the incident.

Abbie Emmett, 27, died days after arriving from the UK with her husband Sean, 43, a former professional Grand Prix motorcyclist. The couple were staying at the Jumeirah Creekside Hotel in Al Garhoud.

Mr Emmett has been forced to remain in the country since then after his passport was confiscated when he turned up drunk at a police station to sign papers to release his wife’s body.

He has complained to the British press that he can’t understand why he must remain, that police had completed their investigation and that there were no suspicious circumstances surrounding his wife’s death.

Prosecution sources now say he cannot leave the country because he is the chief suspect in a murder investigation into his wife’s death. They have not said what stage the investigation is at or why it had taken seven months without reaching a conclusion.

Nine days after the death, when Mr Emmett was attending Al Rashidiyah Police station on February 28 to sign papers related to the release of his wife’s body he was found to be heavily drunk and was charged, found guilty and fined Dh2,000 for consuming alcohol illegally.

His passport has remained with Dubai authorities ever since.

“He was not given his passport back because he was bailed with the guarantee of his passport remaining with the prosecution,” said a prosecution source. The source also said Mr Emmett had not yet paid the Dh2,000 fine, which was imposed in his absence.

Mr Emmett says his wife had been leaning over the railing after dropping her new wedding ring when she fell.

He has also complained about his treatment. “Enough is enough. I’m effectively locked in the world’s biggest prison and I can’t go on,” he told The Independent newspaper in the UK.

“I just can’t understand what they are investigating. I’d be happy even if they deported me because I’ll never come back here.”

salamir@thenational.ae