Dubai: The Dubai Appeal Court on Wednesday reduced a worker's sentence of three years imprisonment to one year after his conviction for attempting to sexually abuse a 10-year-old British schoolgirl while playing on her bicycle.
"The court has reduced the primary judgment [three years in jail] to one year. The accused [27-year-old Bangladeshi A.B.] will be deported after the completion of his punishment," said Presiding Judge Mustafa Atta Al Shennawi upon pronouncing Wednesday's judgment.
Prosecutors said the 10-year-old schoolgirl freed herself by kicking the defendant who attempted to sexually abuse her with the assistance of another suspect who remains at large.
The accused pleaded not guilty when he appeared in court.
According to the charge sheet, A.B. tried to abuse the schoolgirl by immobilising and gagging her, but she kicked him and broke free.
The girl's 44-year-old father said his wife informed him over the phone that their daughter went out to play but didn't return.
"I left work and rushed home… when I reached the place, my wife and I searched for our daughter. Around 6:00pm, we spotted our daughter standing at the villa's entrance near the security guard and she was crying.
"We took her inside to know why she didn't come back home," the father said.
Prosecution records quoted the schoolgirl telling her father while she was searching for mice while riding on her bicycle, two workers walked towards her.
"She said one of them grabbed her by her belly and put his hand on her mouth, then asked the other one to undress her, wanting to abuse her. Then she said she freed herself and kicked one of the men and left the place," the father said.
An Emirati corporal testified to prosecutors that after the incident, a police team combed the neighbourhood and detained two suspects, including A.B.
"I questioned A.B. who confessed that he grabbed the schoolgirl by her belly and gagged her but she broke free before he could undress her. The girl identified A.B. at the police line-up," claimed the corporal.
The judgment remains subject to appeal before the Cassation Court within 30 days.