Stunned man given month in Dubai jail...
A Cambusbarron man was this week in shock after he was handed a one-month prison sentence in Dubai and could face a further three years behind bars.
Jamie Harron was brought before the courts on charges arising from his time in the Middle East holiday destination.
The 27-year-old electrician denies making a rude gesture in traffic and indecent behaviour in public, but has admitted drinking alcohol.
He could face up to three years in a Dubai jail if he is found guilty of the charge alleging he indecently touched a business man in a crowded bar.
But this week he was sentenced to 30 days for making a gesture with his finger.
Mr Harron has been trapped in the United Arab Emirates since July after he had his passport confiscated pending the court verdict.
He claims he inadvertently touched the hip of a managing director of a global technology giant, Emad Tabaza to avoid the pair bumping in to each other and spilling their drinks but denies indecency at the Rock Bottom Bar in Dubai.
Mr Harron, who had been on a twoday stay in Dubai following a spell working in Afghanistan, vowed to fight the prison term ruling.
“My lawyers put in an objection to my 30-day prison sentence, issued (in my absence),” he added. “I hope it can be sorted out, but I didn’t think it would go on for this long.
“I’ve lost my job, I’m in debt now, I may be going to prison – and all this for a two-day stop over. It’s just unbelievable. I’m still in shock that it’s actually happened.”
Mr Harron was also frustrated by the way Dubai prosecutors had handled the case.
“They have separated the charges and it means I could be here longer,” he added. “Apparently, I was sentenced for raising my finger at the man but I did not do that. I wouldn’t do that.”
Although Mr Harron has been sentenced, he is not currently in prison. He has also been ordered to pay a fine of 2,000 dirham – around £400 – and also faces deportation.
In Dubai, adult non-Muslims are allowed to consume alcohol in licensed bars and hotels or at home with the possession of an alcohol licence. But it is a punishable offence to drink or to be under the influence of alcohol in a public place.
Mr Harron is to return to court on October 22 in at least one of the cases but the process and particulars has attracted confusion.
He has been supported through his ordeal by the campaign group, Detained in Dubai, who help people who have become victims of injustice in the United Arab Emirates.
Foreign office staff are “providing consular assistance”.
It’s unbelievable... I’m still in shock that it actually happened
Stop-over Jamie Harron was in Dubai for two days
Shocked Cambusbarron man, Jamie Harron, right, faces three years in a Dubai prison for touching a man’s hip in a bar