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Twin sisters plead not guilty in police assault case

Lawyer tells Appeal Court his clients have complained to police’s Human Rights Department about abuse

Gulf News

Dubai: Twin advocate sisters renewed their not guilty plea in a court on Wednesday as they challenged a six-month imprisonment they were handed for getting drunk, and beating and cursing a policewoman.

In June, the Dubai Court of First Instance sentenced the British sisters to six months in jail for assaulting and verbally abusing the policewoman while they were under the influence of liquor.

The twins appealed the ruling and renewed their innocent plea when they defended themselves before the Dubai Appeal Court on Wednesday.

The Britons were heard refuting the assault and cursing charges before presiding judge Saeed Salem Bin Sarm. They contended that they were pushed and treated improperly by the police.

According to the case, police were summoned to Al Barsha area where the British sisters were behaving mischievously outside a hotel in August 2017.

A police patrol team that reached the hotel found the two advocate sisters drunk and behaving outrageously. One of the sisters was being treated for a hand injury in an ambulance car by paramedics, while the other was standing outside the ambulance and shouting.

When the Britons refused to cooperate with the policeman, he contacted his supervisor, who ordered him to handcuff the sisters and bring them to the police station.

Outside the police station, the policeman called his female colleague to come and take the sisters and then he entered the station to get another handcuff.

When the policeman returned, he saw his female co-worker being assaulted and pushed down to the floor.

The Britons were restrained and put on a police bus to be sent for an alcohol test, during which they assaulted the policewoman again and cursed her.

During Wednesday’s hearing, the sisters’ lawyer, Saeed Al Barq, argued before presiding judge Bin Sarm that his clients were victims in this case.

“My clients were first treated badly by the hotel’s security guard while they were waiting outside the hotel. My clients were the ones who called the police … they had been abused by the guard. One of them was pushed and she fell down on the pavement and broke her finger. It is true that they had consumed some alcohol but they were still conscious … they were not drunk. When the police came, my clients were treated as culprits and not victims although they were the ones who had called 999. They were also kept in a bus for two hours waiting to be taken for a liquor test … they were kept in the bus in a very hot and humid weather,” contended the lawyer.

Law enforcement officers treated the suspects inappropriately and improperly, according to lawyer Al Barq, who was heard telling presiding judge Bin Sarm: “My clients were mistreated by the police staff. They have been living here and working as advocates for a law firm for more than 10 years … they are law-abiding citizens. They have lodged a complaint of abuse and mistreatment before Dubai Police’s human rights department. We ask the court to club that complaint with this case. My clients are innocent.”

A ruling will be heard on September 12.

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