Taxi driver faces prison for death of passenger


By Awad Mustafa

DUBAI // A man died in the back seat of a police car after being arrested for fighting with a taxi driver, the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance heard yesterday.

Dubai taxi
Dubai taxi

Hussein Ali was detained on February 26 after he was involved in an altercation near the Hyatt Regency hotel in Deira. Officers found him dead in the back seat of their patrol car when it arrived at Naif police station.

The taxi driver, M N, 44, was charged with assault leading to death, which carries a maximum of 10 years in jail and a Dh250,000 blood money penalty. He did not appear in court or enter a plea.

The court head that Mr Ali told MN to “go straight”. After a while MN asked for his destination. An argument began and Mr Ali attacked him, the taxi driver said. When police arrived, blood was found around the vehicle, as a result of the fight. An ambulance was called and the passenger was examined by paramedics. Mr Ali did not complain of any injuries and was released into police custody.

A postmortem found that Mr Ali’s death was caused by a coronary attack inflicted through psychological and physical stress. The report also said that Mr Ali had an advanced heart condition that causes minor heart attacks.

The court, which did not receive a plea from the defendant, will issue its verdict on June 9.