Dubai jail sentence upheld for kissing couple

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The Independent Online

Two Britons convicted of kissing in public had their one-month prison sentence upheld by a Dubai court today.

Ayman Najafi, 24, and Charlotte Adams, 25, were arrested by police in the Gulf resort last November after a woman complained they had been seen kissing on the mouth in a restaurant, breaching Dubai's strict decency laws.

They were sentenced last month when a judge at Dubai's Misdemeanours Court heard written evidence from a 38-year-old mother who complained to police.

She said she was offended by their behaviour at the Jumeirah Beach Residence, where she was dining with her daughter.

The judge dismissed Mr Najafi's claim he had merely kissed Miss Adams on the cheek and sentenced both to a month in jail followed by deportation.

But the pair were bailed pending today's appeal which has now been rejected.

Mr Najafi has been working for marketing firm Hay Group in Dubai for about 18 months.

Foreign Office advice for Britons going to the United Arab Emirates, of which Dubai is part, warn travellers to be wary of breaching local customs.

A statement on the FCO website reads: "Britons can find themselves facing charges relating to cultural differences, such as using bad language, rude gestures or public displays of affection."

In 2008, two Britons accused of having sex on the beach got three months in jail, though their sentences were later suspended.