Beach couple plead not guilty

Two Britons plead not guilty to charges of having intercourse on a public beach at their first appearance in court.

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Two Britons pleaded not guilty to charges of having intercourse on a public beach at their first appearance at the Dubai Misdemeanours Court yesterday. Michelle Palmer and Vincent Acors, who were arrested on Jumeirah beach just after midnight on July 5, were charged with illicit relations, public indecency and being intoxicated in public. They were released on bail. The charges were read out at about 9am to the accused by the presiding judge, Abdullatif Hamad, according to a source close to the case. "Both pleaded not guilty to having sexual relations and committing an indecent act in public. However, they admitted to consuming alcohol. Ms Palmer produced her liquor licence to the court."

The hearing was initially set for Aug 21, but the date was moved forward. The pair were represented by a lawyer who said he would submit papers in their defence. The next hearing is scheduled for Sept 2. If convicted, they each face jail sentences of three to six months followed by deportation. @Email:rruiz@thenational.ae