UAE legal Q&As: Can a family file molestation report two years after incident?

A reader asks whether a report about a molestation can be made two years after the incident took place.

Q: A couple wants to sue a man whom their daughter said had molested her when she was 5. Can the family file a lawsuit even though it happened two years ago?

A: A report can be filed even after two years, as the law allows plaintiffs to file lawsuits within five years after the alleged incident. The family has to file the lawsuit in the UAE and that will trigger an investigation. However, the testimony of the child alone will not stand in a court of law and is insufficient for the case to be filed. Evidence such as a medical report will, however, support a lawsuit.

Q: My son was arrested last year for mistakenly taking photos of a place near an area where photography is prohibited. As I do not live in the UAE, how can I follow up on his case or find out which court is responsible for the matter, given that we have yet to appoint a lawyer?

A: You can visit the UAE on a tourism visa and check with the public prosecution on whether or not there is a lawsuit filed against your son and the charges that he may face. If you are unable to visit the UAE, only your immediate family members are allowed to follow up on your behalf, or you can appoint a lawyer in the UAE to assist you with the matter.

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Published: September 3, 2016 04:00 AM