A Dubai-based Filipino man is currently under trial in a UAE Court of First Instance, accused of surprising a female colleague with a kiss, Khaleej Times reported.
The 33-year old faces a molestation charge in the case which dates back to December 2017.
He was reported to authorities by a 24-year-old woman. In her complaint, the woman said the man, who's her supervisor at work kissed her without asking her permission.
The man will face strict legal consequences
The woman told investigators her supervisor invited her to go meet a client on the day of the incident. They both headed to Al Rashidiya metro station where the meeting was set.
The defendant then told the woman he wanted to give her a gift, asking her to close her eyes because he wanted to surprise her.
"He wanted me to close my eyes for the surprise. I found he had hair clips for me and I thanked him for it. He then decided he had another gift for me and when I opened my eyes I was surprised by him suddenly kissing me," she testified.
Shocked by his behavior, the woman pushed her supervisor away and hit him. Even though he tried to apologize for his actions, the complainant immediately filed a police report against the man. He admitted to the charge during interrogation.
According to Khaleej Times, "the public prosecution referred him to the court with a recommendation that the strictest penalty possible."
The UAE implements strict anti-harassment laws especially when it comes to workplaces
Under current UAE laws, sexual harassment in the workplace, which is defined as "any unwelcome sexual advance or conduct on the job that creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment," is punishable by fines and/or jail terms.
Article 359 of the country's law states that anyone who "attempts to disgrace a female by words or by deeds in a public street or frequented place, shall be punished by detention for a period not exceeding one year and by a fine not exceeding ten thousand Dirhams, or by either of these two penalties."
Victims of sexual assault in the country are encouraged to report incidents of harassment to police and are ensured that the law will be on their side.