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UAE penal code changes allow for immediate deportation

UAE penal code changes allow for immediate deportation

New changes increase the maximum fine for some crimes and allow the option of community service for misdemeanours

New changes to the UAE penal code introduced on Sunday allow for higher fines, harsher punishments and immediate deportation in some cases.

Under the new rules, expats can no longer escape deportation at the end of their sentence if found guilty of a crime. However, it will still be subject to the judge’s discretion for misdemeanours.

Deportation can also be immediate for certain cases, such as those found guilty of prostitution.

The maximum fine for those convicted of a crime has been increased from Dhs100,000 to Dhs1m and from Dhs30,000 to Dhs300,000 for misdemeanours.

The changes also increase the maximum fine for companies from Dhs50,000 to Dhs500,000,

Harsher fines are expected to deter crime in cases where the defendants believe they will be released by a pardon before serving their full jail sentence.

Other significant changes include an increase in the maximum sentence for undermining state security at times of war from 10 years to the death penalty.

Judges also now have the ability to issue community service rather than jail time for minor misdemeanours that would have carried a prison sentence of six months or less.

A section in the old laws listed acts allowing husbands to punish their wives and parents to punish their children within the limits of Sharia Law has also been removed.

An increase in assault cases filed by women and children is expected as a result.

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