Dubai: A visitor has been accused of cross-dressing by putting on makeup and wearing a woman’s outfit at Dubai Mall where he was caught.

The British man, S.L., was said to have been spotted disguised as a woman and with make-up on before law enforcement officers apprehended him on December 18.

Prosecutors charged the suspect with cross-dressing.

“The dress that I was wearing, is what I normally and dress daily in London ... it’s allowed and normal in the UK,” argued S.L. as he defended himself before the Dubai Misdemeanours Court on Wednesday.

“You are accused of disguising yourself as a female. Where were you going at the time of your arrest?” presiding judge Anwar Mahmoud asked the suspect.

The Briton then explained that he wasn’t wearing disguise, and that the dress he was seen in is his normal attire.

“That’s the way I always dress in London and it’s normal. The clothes in which I was caught at the mall are the same ones I had on me when I reached Dubai airport ... but I was not told anything by the immigration officer. I was not told it is illegal. I was here on a visit and the next day was my return flight and I was at Dubai Mall to buy a box of chocolates for my friends back home,” the suspect told the judge, maintaining that he didn’t know that the way he dressed was illegal.

“Did you have makeup on?” presiding judge Mahmoud asked S.L.

The Briton replied that when he arrived at the airport he had some cream on his face and that the customs officer didn’t tell him anything or stop him or warn him that it’s illegal to use cream on the face. He denied wearing make-up.

“You were quoted as saying during questioning that you had had a gender transformation operation and that you have changed your sex from a male to a female. Did you say that?” the judge asked the defendant.

“Not at all. I am a man,” replied the Briton.

Thereafter the judge was seen checking the papers of the case file before he asked him to check an image.

S.L. then confirmed that he was the person in the picture.

The suspect’s lawyer argued before presiding judge Mahmoud that his client had no criminal intent and that he was unaware that the nature of his outfit represented a crime in the UAE, unlike in London.

Thereafter the judge interrupted the lawyer and asked if he was planning to produce a written defence, before he said: “The court will hand out a judgement next week and the suspect’s lawyer shall submit a written defence within three days.”

In the meantime, the Briton asked for the judge’s permission to speak and he was heard saying: “I’m sorry...”