By Bassam Za’za’
DUBAI -- Prosecutors have started questioning an Indian man who used his mobile phone to secretly film an Emirati official beating a driver , then uploaded the video on YouTube.
The Indian suspect, identified by records as S.R.A., will sit down for interrogation before Deira Prosecution on Sunday, a senior source told Gulf News on Thursday.
“The Emirati official’s family lodged a complaint at Al Qusais Police Station reportedly accusing S.R.A. of breaching their privacy and libelling them by uploading the assault video on the social media network, and it went viral. In their complaint the family is alleging that they have been defamed as thousands have seen the video, reposted and/or recirculated it since S.R.A. uploaded it on YouTube on Saturday,” said the chief prosecutor, who added that S.R.A. faces primary charges of breaching privacy of the Emirati man, identified as M.S.S., and libelling him and his family
An investigation hearing at the prosecution was held on Thursday and it continues on Sunday as the investigating prosecutor is scheduled to hear more witnesses.
“We cannot reveal further details neither now nor later as the investigations are confidential and haven’t concluded. A media statement might be issued, and if needed, by the Public Prosecution,” added the chief prosecutor.
Under article 372 of the UAE’s Penal Code, a suspect who libels someone publicly and subjects the victim to disdain or punishment could face up to two years in jail or a maximum fine of Dh20,000.
The same article stipulates that a suspect who libels a public official while carrying out his/her duty or defames the official’s family could face up to three years in jail and/or a fine.
If the libel happened through publishing defamatory material in a newspaper or any publication, then that is considered an aggravating factor under the same law.
Acting Attorney General Yousuf Hassan Al Mutawa ordered that M.S.S. be provisionally detained pending further investigations into the beating of the Indian driver following a minor accident in Al Muraqqabat.
“The defendant, who was exposed on YouTube assaulting the victim, has been confronted by the video footage that went viral on social media networks,” said Al Mutawa.