Smoker whose cigarette butt gutted Dubai hotel room fined Dh2,000

Smoker fined Dh2,000 over fire that caused Dh60,000 worth of damage to a hotel in Naif.

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DUBAI // A smoker who discarded her cigarette and went to lunch returned to find police and civil defence officers swarming around her gutted hotel room and Dh60,000 worth of damage.

Cleaners at the Parasol Hotel in Naif saw heavy smoke coming from under the door of FB, 46, from Iran, about half an hour after she left for lunch on May 21 last year. Staff opened the door and tried to extinguish the blaze with a hose but were unsuccessful and civil defence were called.

While fire fighters managed to prevent the fire spreading, the woman's room was completely gutted. She was arrested upon her return to the apartment.

She claimed to investigators that she had not smoked in the room and that no smokers had visited her either. "I rarely smoke cigarettes, I smoke shisha but even so, I never smoked inside the room. I would go to a cafe if I wanted to smoke," she insisted.

However, she was contradicted by the cleaner MO, 23, from Bangladesh, who discovered the fire. "I saw her smoking many times and would see cigarette butts when I went to clean the room," he said.

The hotel owner HR, 46, from Iran, agreed, saying: "The cleaners told me they often found cigarette butts in the rubbish bins inside the room."

She was not present at the Misdemeanours Court to enter a plea today, but was found guilty and fined Dh2,000.