London surgeon detained in Dubai over driving row

Dr Nunoo-Mensah is alleged to have raised his finger at another motorist after being tailgated
London surgeon detained in Dubai over driving row
Dr Nunoo-Mensah, a surgeon at Kings College Hospital London, has been held in Dubai over a row with another motorist
By Joanne Bladd
Thu 05 May 2011 02:58 PM

A top London surgeon has been detained in Dubai on a charge of public indecency following an alternation with a motorist, it was reported Thursday.

Joseph Nunoo-Mensah, a consultant surgeon at King's College Hospital, London, faces trial after he was accused of making a rude gesture at another driver, The Independent reported.

Dr Nunoo-Mensah was in the UAE with his family at the invitation of US healthcare group Cleveland Clinic, which is building a medical centre in the Gulf state’s capital.

The British national said he was returning to Dubai when he was tailgated by a car flashing its lights. The stretch of road had a 60kph speed limit as roadworks were ongoing, he told the paper.

“I was trying to abide by the speed limit and couldn't move out of his way. I pulled over when I could but instead of overtaking us, he pulled up alongside… and drove in parallel with us for up to a minute. He was looking at me in an intimidating way – I was quite terrified,” he said.

“I raised both my hands to say, 'What do you want?' but he pulled and then took off and turned right. He alleges I stuck a finger at him but I raised both hands. I am sure he must have seen them at an angle, and that was offensive to him.”

Making offensive hand gestures is illegal in the UAE and can lead to a jail term.

Dr Nunoo-Mensah had his passport confiscated by police the next day and is now waiting to be notified of his court date.  

At King’s, his patients awaiting surgery have had their operations reallocated to other doctors.

The case is the latest documenting the arrest of British nationals in the UAE, following a spate of arrests relating to crimes such as the illegal consumption of alcohol and inappropriate behaviour.

Holidaymaker Lee Bradley Brown died in custody in Dubai last month after being arrested for the alleged assault of a Nepalese housekeeper at the emirate’s iconic Burj al-Arab hotel.

The British Embassy said in 2009 that Brits were more likely to be arrested in the UAE than anywhere else in the world.

A poll of British tourists in March ranked Dubai, which hosts around one million Brits a year, alongside Mexico, South Africa and Jamica as the countries they feel the least safe in.

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