Dubai prison boss sentenced to jail for inmate beatings

DUBAI (AFP) – The former director of a Dubai jail and 24 wardens and police officers have been sentenced to prison terms for beating up inmates during a check for drugs, Gulf newspapers reported on Monday.

The trial of such officials and subsequent publicity is extremely rare in the Gulf, and most newspapers carried the story on their front page.


Official newspaper Al-Ittihad said the men were all accused of “abuse of power and ill-treatment of detainees under their guard.”


The former director and six wardens and anti-riot police were sentenced to six months in prison while the 18 others received three-month sentences.


According to statements from the men who were attacked, the accused formed a double row outside the cells and ordered the men to come out. As they moved between the two lines, the wardens and police kicked and beat them.


One convict, an Armenian, suffered blows to his spine, and the trial judge declared “it was clear that the detainees have been beaten.”


Around a dozen convicts had complained about being assualted.


Defence counsel questioned the reliability of the detainees’ statements and a recording taken from one of the prison surveillance cameras. They said they would appeal against the verdict.


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