Abu Dhabi court: Dh1 million compensation bid over road rage

Fight between motorists sparked by overtaking incident escalated into fists flying, insults and a car crash.

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ABU DHABI // A man who fought with a fellow motorist following a crash is seeking Dh1 million in compensation.

The man, a 30-year-old student from Yemen, is suing a 39-year-old Emirati Armed Services employee for damages to his face and car.

The Federal Supreme Court heard yesterday that a fight broke out between the two after the Yemeni tried to overtake the Emirati. “The Yemeni tried to overtake my client by force when there was no room for that,” claimed the Emirati’s lawyer Zayed Al Shamsi. “He then insulted my client verbally and made an inappropriate gesture.”

This angered the Emirati, who stopped his car and climbed out to confront the Yemeni. Both then attacked each other.

When the fight appeared to be over, the Emirati returned to his car, but as he did so the Yemeni insulted him once again. The Emirati then crashed his car into the Yemeni’s vehicle before getting out and attacking him once more. According to Mr Al Shamsi, this crash was unintentional.

The lawyer claimed that the case should be considered one of mutual assault. He also claimed that both parties had previously reconciled at the police station. However, the case file had no record of the reconciliation.

The lawyer claims that a witness to the fight only saw half of what had happened. “He did not see that the Yemeni was also attacking my client before,” he said.

The case had been heard by the Sharjah First Instance Court and the Appeals Court. The first court found the Emirati guilty of assault and sentenced him to one month in prison and fined him Dh2,000. The second court upheld that ruling, so the Emirati appealed to the Federal Supreme Court.

He is out on bail and has not served his sentence. His lawyer asked for his sentence to be suspended until the Federal Supreme Court rules in the case.

Once its verdict is announced the case will be referred to the Civil Court for a ruling on the Yemeni’s compensation claim.