The Dubai Misdemeanour Court found the 47-year-old journalist, D.H., and his 43-year-old countryman M.E., a social media activist, guilty of obscene exchanges
Dubai: A journalist who was a candidate for the Federal National Council (FNC) elections has been sentenced to a month in jail along with another man because they exchanged insults on Facebook.
The Dubai Misdemeanour Court found the 47-year-old journalist, D.H., and his 43-year-old countryman M.E., a social media activist, guilty of obscene exchanges on each other's Facebook wall.
"The civil cases lodged by each of the defendants against the other will be referred to the Dubai Civil Court," said Presiding Judge Ezzat Abdul Elah Mansour upon pronouncing yesterday's judgment.
The Emirati defendants pleaded not guilty and blamed each other for starting the spree of insults. "I did not use foul language with him. He is the one who wrote an article and called me bad names. He did so when I ran in the elections. I cursed him after he started it," D.H. contended in court.
M.E. dismissed the journalist's allegations claiming that he didn't use any bad words.
"I've known the claimant for 20 years… we were colleagues and friends. During an FNC election gathering, he cursed me. He started first… then I wrote an article and replied to what he said."
D.H. claimed that the incident happened when M.E. sent him a friend request on Facebook.
"He ridiculed me on Face-book. I used to work for Dubai Municipality before I moved to a media department in Dubai. I wrote several columns and articles and have radio programmes, so I didn't pay much attention to him," D.H. added.
He wrote an article in which he incited Facebook users not to vote for me in the elections. I complained to the police," D.H. claimed.
All attempts to reconcile the defendants reached a dead end. The judge granted them several adjournments to settle their disputes, but they persistently blamed each other.
The social media user, according to court records, testified that D.H. accused him of being a liar and used foul language against him on Facebook.
M.I. said D.H. threatened to scandalise him on Facebook, Twitter and BlackBerry Messenger.
Another court recently dropped a case against M.E. who was tried for using foul language on the Twitter account of the Chief of Dubai Police Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan. source:gulfnews.com