A company which sold a bugging device and tracking system to a man for eavesdropping on his estranged wife, and the company’s manager have been fined Dh100,000 each, while the husband has been sentenced to three months in prison with a fine of Dh10,000.
Upholding the Dubai Court of First Instance, the Dubai Court of Appeal on Wednesday found the man, who hails from an Arab country, guilty of invading the privacy of his divorced wife by installing a bug in her vehicle to monitor her movements and tap her conversation, in contravention of the law.
The court slapped the IT Company and its manager Dh100,000 each for selling the tracking and bug device meant for corporates and companies, without procuring a permit from the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA).
The case dates back to 2010 when the accused asked his wife to go to an auto motor accessories store to get the car window glass tinted. This required the car to be left in the store for a day.
The woman later realised that her husband knew all her movements and the conversations with her women friends while she was in the vehicle.
After a year of suspicion, the wife went back to the accessories store and discovered from a person working there that a location tracking system and a bugging device had been attached beneath the steering wheel. The man told her that the store had done so upon the request of her husband.
After getting all the information, she approached the state security department of the Dubai Police and told them about the incident. Her former husband, the prime suspect and the second accused were referred to the public prosecution for investigation. The pair denied the charges levelled against them, and the ex-husband said the devices were installed before his marriage with the complainant broke up and the car was his property. It was later that the car was transferred and sold to his estranged wife.
The second suspect who works as manager of a company specialised in location positioning systems, tracking and security systems, also denied the charges pressed against him.
It was stated in the court record that the device is licensed and authorised for use of companies only, and individuals are not allowed to install such equipment on their private motor vehicles.
Supplying such devices requires prior consent from the bodies concerned and then imported. The devices should also have purchase bills and photocopy of the motor vehicle’s registration book.
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