Dubai: A lawyer is seeking to win the acquittal of his client, an Emirati student [nicknamed Hamdan British] who is serving a three-year sentence for wearing bikinis and posting his pictures on the internet.
"My client, M.S., [22-year-old Emirati student] was unlawfully arrested and detained... He has pleaded not guilty and we are seeking to clear his charges," M.S.'s lawyer Jasem Al Naqbi argued before the Dubai Court of Appeal on Tuesday.
After the Dubai Court of First Instance convicted M.S. and jailed him for three years, he appealed the primary judgment and is seeking innocence before the Appeal Court.
Al Naqbi contended before Presiding Judge Mustafa Al Shennawi: "Law enforcement officers claimed that there were indecent pictures of my client cross-dressed. Meanwhile, M.S. claims that the pictures were stolen from his mobile phone. The case lacks concrete evidence that he published his photos on the internet."
Law enforcement officers said M.S. was not detained red-handed but he was arrested in Dubai International Airport, argued the lawyer. Presiding Judge Al Shennawi will sentence M.S. on July 20.
According to the primary judgment, M.S. was found guilty of posing as a male prostitute and posting on the internet, indecent pictures of him wearing bikinis in an attempt to seduce men.
The 22-year-old student had pleaded not guilty.
The primary court also dismissed a civil lawsuit of Dh20,000 in temporary compensation which was lodged by another Emirati suspect against the 22-year-old.
The suspect claimed [in his civil lawsuit] that when he took snapshots of the 22-year-old wearing women's wear, he was unaware that the latter will post them on internet.
According to records, he was also charged with allowing the other Emirati suspect to have consensual sex with him. The latter was convicted and sentenced to one year by the Dubai Misdemeanours Court.
Prosecutors additionally charged him with dressing as a woman and taking pictures of himself wearing make-up before posting photographs.
Records said these pictures were also emailed to potential male clients.
According to the charge sheet, Chief Prosecutor Hamad Juma Al Khalafi charged M.S. with offending Islam by taking a picture of himself dressed as a woman wearing a hijab and make-up while pretending to read the Quran. He deemed his act as a violation of the Quran's sanctity slandering Islam.