A British man who is facing a three-year jail sentence in Dubai after putting his hand on a man in a bar so he did not “bump and spill drinks”, has appeared in court.
Campaign group Detained in Dubai said Jamie Harron, 27, had expected to be arrested at the hearing on Sunday for failing to appear at a previous court date, which the group claimed was moved without notification.
The electrician, from Scotland, was not arrested but was told to remain in the city for future court hearings.
His representatives said legal troubles began when he was arrested for alleged public indecency and drinking alcohol at the Rock Bottom Bar on July 15.
He is said to have been moving through the crowded bar holding a drink, with his hand in front of him to avoid spillage, when he “touched a man on his hip to avoid impact”.
Detained in Dubai said he was then locked up for five days in Al Barsha prison, before being released after bail with his passport confiscated.
Harron, from Stirling, had been working in Afghanistan and was on a two-day stopover in Dubai when the incident happened.
He is said to have since lost his job and has spent more than £30,000 in expenses and legal fees.
Radha Stirling, chief executive of Detained in Dubai, said: “Jamie is relieved he wasn’t arrested [at the latest hearing]. It was expected that he would have to spend some time in prison.”
She said a further court date was expected in about two weeks, although no firm date has yet been set and Harron expects the court process to be “drawn out”.
“He’s concerned. He’s already been there three months. It seems to be never-ending for him and he’s frustrated,” she added.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said it was providing consular assistance on the matter.