A Dubai-based taxi driver who inappropriately approached a teenage girl in his vehicle received a fine and deportation sentence on Tuesday, Gulf News reported.
The 40-year-old Pakistani man had been driving the 16-year-old American student to school for three weeks before the incident took place.
"One day I asked him to drive me to Sharjah for a friend’s party … then I called him to drive me back home. On the way back, he told me that he loves me and grabbed my hand. When I pulled my hand away, my ring was stuck in his hand. I stepped out of his taxi and went home. He disturbed me later on WhatsApp and sent me love messages," she said.
The girl also explained that the defendant told her he wanted to come over to her house and spend time with her. She rejected all his approaches, telling him she was not interested in being in any form of relationship with him.
When his attempts continued, the complainant called the man telling him she wanted to pay him a sum of money she owed him. After he arrived, the girl, who was with a friend, asked the defendant to come with her to a police station because she wanted to report him.
The man received a "lenient" sentence after the girl gave him a waiver document
During initial interrogations, the man told prosecutors he was infatuated with the teenage girl and found her beautiful, adding that he "wanted to kiss her."
However, in court, the defendant entered a not guilty plea and denied telling the girl he loved her face-to-face, claiming he had only sent her love messages via WhatsApp.
After reviewing the case, Dubai's Court of First Instance convicted the man of "sexually offending and molesting the girl".
According to Gulf News, presiding Judge Mohammad Jamal cited grounds of leniency and fined the defendant after he submitted a waiver in court that he had obtained from the victim.
However, at the sentencing session, the judge stressed that in addition to the monetary fine, the accused will also be deported from the UAE.
His ruling remains subject to appeal.