Dubai: A driver, who sexually offended a 16-year-old schoolgirl when he touched her palm and told her that he loves her in his taxi, has been fined Dh1,000.

The 16-year-old American school student had been shuttling with the 40-year-old Pakistani driver in his taxi for three weeks in December.

Having called him up to pick her from a friend’s party in Sharjah, the 40-year-old surprised the girl in his vehicle when he told her that he loved her while driving her home at the Dubai Healthcare City.

He also grabbed her hand several times while expressing his love before she slid her palm away from his hand.

Her ring got stuck in his hand when she slid her hand away from his and he kept on telling her that he loved her until she reached her residence.

Not withholding himself, the defendant sent several love messages to the girl’s WhatsApp and requested her permission to visit her place so he could kiss her.

The 16-year-old responded that she was not interested in being his lover and asked him to stop disturbing her.

Then when he forwarded an image of him wearing her ring in his finger on WhatsApp, the girl asked him to come the next day to pay him for the ride that she hadn’t paid for earlier.

Accompanied by a friend of hers, the American schoolgirl paid the defendant his money and then told him to accompany her to the police to lodge a complaint.

On Tuesday, the Dubai Court of First Instance convicted the 40-year-old defendant of sexually offending and molesting the girl.

Citing grounds of leniency, presiding judge Mohammad Jamal fined the defendant after he submitted in court a waiver that he had obtained from the victim.

According to Tuesday’s ruling, presiding judge Jamal said the accused will be deported.

The defendant entered a not guilty plea and contended that he did not tell her that he loved her but he did so on WhatsApp.

The 16-year-old testified that the incident happened three weeks after she had started commuting with the defendant to school.

“One day I asked him to drive me to Sharjah for a friend’s party … then I called him to drive me back home. On the way back, he told me that he loves me and grabbed my hand. He told me ‘I love you’. When I pulled my hand away, my ring was stuck in his hand. I stepped out of his taxi and went home. He disturbed me later on WhatsApp and sent me love messages,” she said.

The accused told prosecutors that she is beautiful and that he loves her as a friend and that he wanted to kiss her.

The primary ruling remains subject to appeal within 15 days.