Man cleared of filming wife’s friend outside salon

Appeal court overturns man’s jail term, acquits him of molestation and breach of privacy

Dubai: An employee won his appeal after a court cleared him of molesting his wife’s friend and breaching her privacy when he filmed her leaving a salon on his mobile phone.

The Yemeni wife and her Moroccan friend had walked out of a beauty parlour when the 49-year-old Emirati husband was reported to have walked behind them in October 2017.

While the women went to their car, the man allegedly grabbed the Moroccan friend by her shoulder and stopped them.

When the women turned back, they saw the Yemeni’s husband taking a video of the Moroccan on his mobile phone and heard him saying offensive comments.

In March, the Dubai Court of First Instance sentenced the Emirati husband to three months in jail for molesting the Moroccan and breaching her privacy by filming her against her consent.

The primary court, however, acquitted him of saying offensive remarks to the victim.

The Emirati man appealed the verdict before the Appeal Court and sought to acquit himself.

When he showed up before the appellate court, the man pleaded not guilty and contended: “I did not do anything wrong … I was talking to my wife and not to the claimant.”

Presiding judge Saeed Salem Bin Sarm accepted the man’s appeal, overturned his imprisonment and acquitted him of any wrongdoing.

Citing lack of evidence, presiding judge Bin Sarm acquitted the Emirati of molesting the woman, filming her and saying bad words about her.

Records said the Emirati stopped filming and deleted the video once the Moroccan told him she would call the police.

The Moroccan told the police that she was offended by the man’s remarks when he said “look, what type of people are accompanying her [his wife]”.

She claimed the man grabbed her by the shoulder as they left the salon.

“He had his phone that was on video mode and he was filming. He commented while filming and said, ‘What type of people is that! … look, what type of people are accompanying her’. The defendant is my friend’s husband and they have a divorce case in Dubai Courts. I felt embarrassed and offended by his remarks. Then I reported to the police although he had deleted the video,” she claimed.

The appellate ruling remains subject to appeal before the Cassation Court.

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