31/05/2012

'Fifteen Years' For Alleged Bum Pinch

A Northern Ireland businessman is facing up to 15 years in jail after allegedly groping a woman's bottom.

Belfast-born Steven Sherriff, who has lived in Dubai for seven years, fell foul of the emirate’s strict Muslim laws after a dispute in a bar.

If convicted, he will be given a here-15 year prison sentence and then deported.

The 43-year-old said he was punched by the woman’s boyfriend when she accused him of squeezing her left buttock and slipping his hand between her legs.

Sherriff insisted she was blaming the wrong person but her boyfriend Ryan Riley hit him and knocked him out.

Both men were arrested but now face separate charges – in Sherriff's case, he is charged with sexual assault and being drunk.

Although the men withdrew complaints against each other, Riley is also facing a charge of drunkenness, which carries a fine of up to £340 and a six month jail sentence.

Sherriff told The Sun: "The craziest thing is I never touched her. I'd never do a thing like that no matter how drunk I was. The Foreign Office have washed their hands of me saying they can’t help me."

Sherriff’s case will be heard in a Dubai court on June 5.

(NE/GK)

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