Dubai: A man in Dubai on a tourist visa died in police custody of ‘natural causes’ on Tuesday, according to Dubai’s attorney general.

Investigations into the death of Lee Bradley Brown, 39, a Briton, have started since Wednesday, Eisam Al Humaidan said. He added that the process started as soon as the death report was received by the Dubai Police.

The preliminary forensic report ruled out any torture. The formal autopsy report will be issued next week.

“The forensic report attributed Brown’s death to asphyxia. The deceased choked on his own vomit. The report also pointed to traces of hashish in his blood and urine samples,” Al Humaidan said.

Police sources said the man, a guest at the Burj Al Arab, was arrested on Saturday following a complaint by the management that he had attacked a Nepalese housekeeper. The Burj Al Arab management confirmed it had made such a complaint.

A hotel source said the Nepalese housekeeper was sent to Brown’s room after he requested assistance. He, however, reportedly attacked the woman and tried to throw her from the sixth floor. Security and staff in the hotel stopped Brown and called the police.

“She suffered injuries and bruises on her body for which she had to seek treatment,” the hotel said.

Torture claims denied

The hotel source said the police arrived at the hotel and arrested Brown. “We learnt of his death from the police three days after the incident,” the source said.

The police source denied any torture of the suspect as was reported in a section of the press. He said that following Brown’s arrest, interrogators took his statement and he was about to be referred to the public prosecutor.

Al Humaidan stressed that Dubai Police treats all its detainees in the context of human rights and human integrity.

He also expressed his condolences to the family of the deceased.

Ruzina Hassan, political and media officer at the British Embassy in Dubai, said the embassy was alerted of the case.

“We can confirm that British national, Lee Bradley [Brown], died on April 12 in police custody. We are providing consular assistance for the family; it’s a difficult time so our thoughts are with the family at this time,” she said.

“We have been in contact with Dubai Police at the highest level since this tragic situation happened. We have also stressed the importance of a full investigation to Dubai Police.”

She said the police have assured the embassy that they were investigating the case and officials from the consular section are in close contact with Dubai Police. “We are also in constant contact with the family and are providing consular support at this time.”