‘Peo­ple’s lives are price­less - give way to paramedics’

7 Days in Dubai - - FRONT PAGE - Ali.shouk@7days.ae ali.shouk@7days.ae

A UAE busi­ness­man who was de­tained by armed po­lice at a US ho­tel when a clerk be­came sus­pi­cious of his kan­doura is to take his de­mand for com­pen­sa­tion to a fed­eral court.

Ahmed Al Men­hali, 41, said that he and the in­vestors he rep­re­sents have faced fi­nan­cial set­backs over the in­ci­dent in Ohio in July.

He told 7DAYS that he will ask a fed­eral judge for $450 mil­lion com­pen­sa­tion over his false ar­rest. Al Men­hali claimed he was rep­re­sent­ing a num­ber of in­vestors in a $1 bil­lion deal when the ar­rest took place.

Al Men­hali told 7DAYS: “I will ask for $450 mil­lion com­pen­sa­tion for the dam­ages and hu­mil­i­a­tion. I will go to the US Fed­eral Court to de­fend my rights.”

The in­ci­dent in July un­folded when a ho­tel re­cep­tion­ist called the lo­cal Avon Po­lice Depart­ment, say­ing that she was sus­pi­cious of Al Men­hali be­cause of his na­tional dress and the fact he was car­ry­ing at least two mo­bile phones. Some re­ports stated she even made ref­er­ence to the ter­ror group ISIS. The fa­ther-of-three had been in the US for sev­eral months af­ter hav­ing heart surgery. Footage re­leased by po­lice showed him be­ing hand­cuffed and dragged around by armed of­fi­cers, be­fore one opens Al Men­hali’swal­let and tosses bank cards, an Emi­rates ID and pic­tures onto the bon­net of a squad car.

Al Men­hali was re­leased but later hos­pi­talised. He took the case to court but As­so­ci­ated Press re­ported that Lo­rain County’s pros­e­cu­tor de­clined to bring any charges against any­one over the case.

Al Men­hali said that he be­lieved the in­ci­dent was de­lib­er­ate to dis­rupt the busi­ness deal he was work­ing on, though he did not elab­o­rate.

He said: “I was the mid­dle­man be­tween Emi­rati in­vestors who were will­ing to in­vest $1 bil­lion in the US. Some peo­ple didn’t want the deal to be done so they made this con­spir­acy to ruin the busi­ness.” Po­lice have is­sued re­newed pleas for mo­torists to give way for emer­gency ve­hi­cles af­ter wit­ness­ing a num­ber of in­ci­dents when mo­torists re­fused to give a way to am­bu­lances. A new cam­paign, Give Way To Am­bu­lances, aims to raise aware­ness about the im­por­tance of mak­ing room on the roads and al­low­ing emer­gency ve­hi­cles to pass. Brigadier Omar Al Shamsi, Deputy Di­rec­tor of Oper­a­tions Depart­ment at Dubai Po­lice, said: “We have a prob­lem with some mo­torists who don’t give way to emer­gency ve­hi­cles. “Peo­ple’s lives are price­less and one sec­ond can save lives. Give way to save a life in Dubai.” Khal­ifa Bin Darri, Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor of the Dubai Cor­po­ra­tion for Am­bu­lance Ser­vices, said:“There are many peo­ple who do not give way to am­bu­lances, which de­lays them from reach­ing those in need.”

DE­FEND­ING HIS RIGHTS: Ahmed Al Men­hali was ar­rested at a ho­tel in Ohio

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