Evidence shows Dubai Brits were tortured, says expert

March 6, 2013

Image of hands in shackles

A torture expert has published a report concluding that three British men arrested in the UAE were indeed tortured, as they have alleged.

Dr Frank Arnold produced his report based upon the limited information currently available about the torture to which Grant Cameron (25) and Karl Williams (25), both from London and Suneet Jeerh (25), from Essex say they were subjected following arrest in July of 2012.

The information available includes an x-ray of one of the men’s broken hand, notes taken by Foreign Office Embassy Staff, and statements from the three men. In his report Dr Arnold states among other things that, “The ‘brown marks’ described on the back of Mr Jeerh’s back would be consistent with his having been subjected to electric shocks at high current density as delivered, for example, by a cattle prod.”

The UAE has flatly denied that the men were tortured following their arrest after police claimed to have found a quantity of a synthetic cannabis known as ‘spice’ in their car. The three men say that after their arrest they were subjected to beatings and electric shocks and threatened by having guns put to their heads. In the case of Mr Williams the electric shocks were administered to the testicles.

Dubai authorities are refusing to let Dr Arnold into the country to conduct an independent assessment of the three men. Without an independent assessment – using sophisticated techniques which can prove or disprove torture allegations – the men’s torture could go largely undocumented. The men were on holiday in Dubai, a tourist destination particularly popular with Brits. They are still being held and have plead not guilty to the charges. They will appear at a hearing on March 14th.

Marc Callcutt, lawyer at Reprieve said: “What these men have been through is appalling and Dr Arnold’s report tells us that their abuse is not a matter for conjecture. Whether they were tortured or not can be categorically proved. The UAE authorities need to let Dr Arnold in to the prison, as we have requested, and conduct an evaluation of the men. If they do not allow this, then everyone should ask whether it is because they have something to hide.”


Notes to editors

1. For more information please contact Clemency Wells or Donald Campbell in Reprieve’s Press Office, on: +44 (0) 207 553 8161 / clemency [dot] wells [at] reprieve [dot] org [dot] uk / donald [dot] campbell [at] reprieve [dot] org [dot] uk

2. Dr Frank Arnold is an expert in the assessment and treatment of torture wounds. The full report can be found here: http://www.reprieve.org.uk/media/downloads/2013_02_27_PRIV_Preliminary_Report_from_Frank_Arnold.pdf

3. For further information about the torture to which the three men claim they were subjected please see here. Witness statements by the men can be seen upon request.

4. Reprieve, a legal action charity, uses the law to enforce the human rights of prisoners, from death row to Guantánamo Bay. Reprieve investigates, litigates and educates, working on the frontline, to provide legal support to prisoners unable to pay for it themselves. Reprieve promotes the rule of law around the world, securing each person’s right to a fair trial and saving lives. Clive Stafford Smith is the founder of Reprieve and has spent 25 years working on behalf of people facing the death penalty in the USA. Follow Reprieve on twitter: @ReprieveUK; if you were forwarded this release, sign up to join our press mailing list.