Civil case will be withheld if there is a related criminal case

Civil case will be withheld if there is a related criminal case

The proceedings in the civil case will be withheld if there is a criminal case pending before the court which is connected with the civil case.



By Ashish Mehta

Published: Mon 12 Aug 2019, 9:45 PM

Q: I was working in the sales department of a company in Dubai from January 2016 to December 2017 and got rewarded several times for my performance. Later, when I was about to finish my visa, my employer offered to renew it, which I refused as I already had a job offer from another company. When my employer found out that I already got the offer letter, he threatened me of consequences if I don't renew the visa.
In January 2018, I requested my December salary, as well as the incentive I earned for that period. But he asked for money to release my passport. After this, I filed a labour case and a separate case for the release of passport. The court ordered him to release my passport but he refused to do that and instead submitted it to the Rafa police station with a false forgery case against me. It has been 18 months since this happened, and I am jobless as the police investigation is still under way and my case is with the public prosecutor. Kindly help me know my rights in this case.
A: We assume that your employment (civil) case is pending before the court and the criminal complaint filed against you by your employer is pending before the public prosecutor. As per the existing criminal procedures law of the UAE, the proceedings in the civil case will be withheld if there is a criminal case pending before the court which is connected with the civil case. This is in accordance with Article 28 of the Federal Law No. 35 of 1992 concerning the Criminal Procedural Law of the UAE as amended by Federal Law No. 29 of 2005 (the 'Criminal Procedures Law'), which states: "Where the civil case is brought before the civil court, it must be stopped until a decisive judgment is rendered in the criminal action filed prior to or during the examination of the civil case. However, if the criminal action is stayed due to the insanity of the accused, the civil action shall be decided in the presence of his curator.
"Stopping the civil action shall not prevent taking the summary precautionary measures. Procedures prescribed in this law shall be followed when deciding the civil action brought before the criminal court.
"Stopping of the civil action brought before the civil court shall cease, when the criminal court renders an incriminating judgment in the absence of the accused, as from the day on which expired the delay allowed for the appeal to be lodged by the public prosecution or from the day of deciding the appeal."
The Public Prosecution may summon you and other parties (employer) who are connected to your case. Upon summoning you, the Public Prosecution may call upon the witnesses and evidence and if required may appoint an expert to verify if the documents are genuine. The Public Prosecution is empowered to appoint an expert to any matter if it deems fit. This is in accordance with Article 96 of the Criminal Procedures Law of the UAE, which states: "Should the investigation require the assistance of a physician or other experts to establish a status quo, the member of the public prosecution shall issue an order of assigning him to submit a report on the task he was assigned for.
"The member of the public prosecution shall be present when the expert is to perform his task and the expert may discharge his duty without the presence of the parties."
As mentioned in Article 181 of the Criminal Procedures Law, you may challenge the documents filed by your employer by providing necessary evidence to the Court.
The said provision of law states: "The public prosecution and the parties may, at any stage reached by the action, to challenge in forgery any paper submitted in the case. The challenge shall be made by a statement in the minutes of the hearing and the challenger must indicate where the forgery occurred and produce the proof to such a forgery."
On the other hand, you may file another criminal case against your employer as the employer has allegedly threatened you to renew your contract. This is in accordance with Article 353 of the Federal Law No. 3 of 1987 on issuance of Penal Code of the UAE, which states: "Whoever threatens by words, deeds or signs, in writing or verbally, or indirectly through another person, in cases other than those mentioned in the two preceding Articles, shall be punished by detention for a period not exceeding one year or by a fine not exceeding Dh10,000."
However, you may have to provide relevant documentary evidence related to threat by your employer to open a criminal complaint.


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