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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 20 November 2018

Worker molests girl swimming in Jumeirah

Girl's father witnesses attack and intervenes

A worker molested a girl while she was swimming with her friends and family at Jumeirah Open Beach.

On June 15, the Sri Lankan girl, 14, was swimming with her family and five other sets of family friends when the Pakistani defendant approached her.

The man, whose age was not disclosed in court records, grabbed the girl by the neck and pushed her head underwater.

The girl’s father, who witnessed the attack, said he was watching his daughter while she swam with a group of her friends, aged between 14 and 16, but was momentarily distracted his other daughter.

“My daughter and the daughters of our friends all went to swim when I saw a group of nearly 10 men approaching them, I immediately warned the girls and screamed at the men,” said the father.

“I screamed to warn her but she didn’t hear or see me because she had her back to us, and the man grabbed her by the neck, and pushed her head down in water. When she emerged, she started screaming,” said the father, who ran towards them.

He pushed the defendant away and hit him but the man’s friends gathered around and attacked the father in response.

An off-duty officer heard the girl’s screams and ran over to break up the fight.

"I was with a group of friends, one of them also an officer. Both of us rushed to then help when we heard screams. When we got there, I saw the defendant pulling the girl from her arm into the sea,” said the policeman.

He said the girl appeared to be having a panic attack.

At Dubai Criminal Court, the defendant denied a sex assault charge but was convicted and sentenced to a year in prison followed by deportation.