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Wed 1 May 2013 08:28 AM

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Dubai torture claims 'baseless', says Attorney General

Issam Al Humaidan says British detainees have filed no official complaint to authorities

Dubai torture claims 'baseless', says Attorney General

Claims by three British men that they were tortured while being detained in Dubai are "baseless", according to the emirate's Attorney General.

Issam Issa Al Humaidan said in a statement published by news agency WAM late on Tuesday that an internal investigation was launched following concerns raised by the British Embassy in the UAE.

Al Humaidan also said that the British citizens Grant Cameron, Karl Williams and Suneet Jeerh, who were convicted for possession of illegal drugs and sentenced to four years in jail on Monday, have not filed any official complaint against the UAE authorities.

He added that the defendants maintain the right to appeal the sentence should they wish to do so.

"Following their arrest the defendants made allegations in the media and to British consular staff that they were tortured during the process of arrest and detainment," Al Humaidan told WAM.

"The defendants, however, did not file any official complaint during the criminal proceedings nor did they file any legal action to the UAE authorities," he added.

"Nevertheless, as a result of British Embassy enquiries an internal investigation was conducted and these allegations were found to be baseless."

The British trio were arrested in July 2012 during a holiday in the UAE. Police said they had found a form of synthetic cannabis in their hire car.

All three men pleaded not guilty to charges of possession of illegal drugs and said police had subjected them to beatings and threatened them with guns.

The Attorney General's comments came as the president of the UAE met Queen Elizabeth on Tuesday on a visit to Britain where Prime Minister David Cameron is under pressure to raise the torture allegations.

Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahayan's visit poses a delicate diplomatic challenge for Cameron who has already expressed concern about the torture accusations but is keen to boost lucrative trade and strategically important diplomatic relations in the Gulf. The two men are due to meet on Wednesday.