Dubai: A taxi driver has been jailed for three months for molesting a teenage schoolgirl in his car while driving her to her residence in Al Barsha.

The 40-year-old Pakistani driver, A.A., picked up the 15-year-old South African girl from her friend’s house and touched her palm, shoulder and elbow in his taxi in January.

The Dubai Court of First Instance convicted the defendant of molesting the girl despite having pleaded not guilty.

“I did not molest her … I touched her shoulder by mistake,” he told the court.

Presiding judge Ahmad Mohammad said the accused will be deported after serving his punishment.

The girl said the incident happened shortly after she called a taxi to pick her up from her friend’s house at 6pm.

“I noticed that he was gazing strangely at my figure. I buckled up my top. I asked him to switch on the radio while driving me towards my family’s house in Al Barsha. Later, he turned the radio off and asked me private questions … I replied, but I did not feel comfortable. I was chatting with my friend on WhatsApp and told her that being with the defendant was discomforting me. Suddenly, he put his hand on my shoulder and said good job … initially, I thought his intentions were good since he had told me earlier that he is married and has a daughter. Then I asked him to drive me back to where he had picked me from because I had forgotten my bag. Then he touched my palm, shoulder and elbow. He took my bag and put in the back. While he returned his hand forward, he touched my shoulder and arm. I ran out of his taxi without taking my bag as soon as he stopped. I stormed into my friend’s house and cried while telling her what had happened,” she said.

Records said the father and brother of the pupil’s friend detained the suspect until the police came and apprehended him. The ruling remains subject to appeal within 12 days.