Omani on trial for harming UAE on social media ‘suffers bipolar disorder’

An Omani blogger on trial for publishing harmful material on social media may not be entirely responsible for his actions, according to a medical expert witness.

An Omani blogger on trial for publishing harmful material on social media may not be entirely responsible for his actions, according to a medical expert witness.

“The accused suffers from bipolar disorder and has a long history of manic episodes,” the medical expert, from Sheikh Khalifa Medical City, told the judge.

“He was never continuous in seeking treatment and has received wrong ones that have clouded his judgement and rendered him unstable, which got him into trouble for most of his life,” thewitness said.

M S R, 31, is accused of creating and managing several online accounts where he published rumours, ideas and information that spread hatred and ruined the general unity and peace of the UAE.

The judge wanted a definitive answer from the expert witness on whether the accused was completely aware of his actions at the times the crimes were committed.

The witness said that the committee could not agree on the accused’s mental capacity at the time of the crimes. “Some of us think he’s not responsible for his actions while the others think he’s partially responsible. It’s not easy to give you a definitive answer,” the witness said, but added that all the pointers suggested the accused might not be responsible for his actions.

A verdict is due on March 14.

nalremeithi@thenational.ae

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