Category: news

STIRLING HAIGH JOINS LEADING HUMAN RIGHTS LAWYER IN TERMINATING ITS REPRESENTATION OF HERVE JAUBERT

Stirling Haigh confirms that it has terminated its relationship with Mr Hervé Jaubert with immediate effect. The termination of services and withdrawal of support for Mr Jaubert follows leading international Human rights lawyer Mr Toby Cadman of Guernica Chambers, who represented Mr Jaubert for the past year, also terminating representation of Mr Jaubert earlier in the year.

David Haigh, managing director of Stirling Haigh who has been assisting Princess Latifa since early 2018 said “following the resignation of Mr Cadman of Guernica Chambers as the head of the legal team for Mr Jaubert, we considered the evidence provided by them and instigated a full review of information provided by Mr Jaubert. We came to the conclusion we could no longer support, or be associated with, Hervé Jaubert”.

About Stirling Haigh:

Stirling Haigh is an international legal consultancy, crisis manager and strategic advisory firm focusing on Dubai, UAE and the wider Middle East. Following its formation in 2016 by human rights lawyer David Haigh, Stirling Haigh rapidly became Dubai’s most prominent civil and criminal legal specialist, leading to it working on behalf of members of the UAE ruling family including Princess Latifa Al Maktoum, the daughter of the ruler of Dubai and Vice President and Prime Minster of the UAE.

FREE LATIFA CAMPAIGN JOINS LEADING HUMAN RIGHTS LAWYER IN TERMINATING SUPPORT FOR HERVE JAUBERT

The official campaign to free Princess Latifa Al Maktoum has confirmed that it has terminated its relationship with, and support for, Mr Hervé Jaubert with immediate effect. The termination of support follows leading international Human rights lawyer Mr. Toby Cadman of Guernica Chambers, who represented Mr Jaubert for the past year, also terminating his services, and Stirling Haigh who had also represented Mr Jaubert for the past year terminating its services.

Tiina Jauhiainen, campaign director of Free Latifa and Princess Latifa’s best friend said “We no longer wish to have any association with Hervé Jaubert.”

Ms Jauhiainen continued “Latifa was aware that Mr Jaubert was not assisting her for any reason other than his own financial gain, however, the information that has now come to light would shock Latifa as it has shocked me.”

“Neither I, nor the campaign, support Mr Jaubert’s attempts to further benefit from Latifa’s bid for freedom, financially or otherwise. Specifically, we do not support Mr Jaubert’s website www.princesslatifa.com, nor the proposed book that, in our opinion, wrongly paints the picture of Mr Jaubert as a hero.”

“Mr Jaubert is now seemingly claiming to represent Latifa, nothing could be further from the truth, nor further than what Latifa wants. To be clear Latifa appointed David Haigh and myself in writing, and both of us continue to help her since she was taken”

David Haigh concluded “I would urge any media outlet, publisher or other provider of information not to assist Mr Jaubert in destroying Latifa’s chances of freedom any further.”

 

About Free Latifa:

The Free Latifa Campaign is run by Latifa’s best friend Tiina Jauhiainen and human rights lawyer and campaigner David Haigh with the support of not for profit legal advocacy NGO Detained International and Stirling Haigh. Updates on the campaign can be found on www.freelatifa.com

Contact Name
Tiina Jauhiainen and David Haigh

Campaign to Free Latifa
Email: latifa@freelatifa.com
Telephone: + 44 (0) 203 868 9995
Twitter: @freelatifa
Facebook: @freelatifa
Instagram: @freelatifa

Times newspaper claim UN warned Dubai over kidnap of Princess Latifa

London, UK: 15 March 2019.
The UN warned Dubai’s ruling family that it intended to publicize concerns that Princess Latifa may have been killed days before photographs of her with Mary Robinson surfaced, claims the Times newspaper today.

Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed al-Maktoum, daughter of Dubai’s ruler, tried to flee in March last year, claiming that she had suffered years of abuse at the hands of her family.

Nine days before Mary Robinson was pictured with Princess Latifa in the first evidence Latifa was still alive, the UN warned Dubai it was about to go public over her disappearance. The UN working group on enforced and Involuntary dissonances made it clear – they thought the princess was dead and wanted answers.

The announcement follows Latifa’s lawyer and representative David Haigh and Tiina Jauhiainen together with leading human rights barrister Toby Cadman filing a UN complaint with the UN working group in April 2018.

The Times reported “Human rights groups [including Detained International] had described Mrs. Robinson, also a former UN high commissioner for human rights, as a “willing pawn” for the family that rules the United Arab Emirates (UAE) after she claimed that Sheikha Latifa was a “troubled young woman” who needed psychiatric help. Correspondence seen by The Times shows that the UN’s working group on enforced or involuntary disappearances wrote to Dubai’s ruling family on December 6 with information it had received about Sheikha Latifa.”

Princess Latifa’s lawyer, Stirling Haigh and Detained International founder David Haigh said “We are thankful to the UN working group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances for taking the case of Princess Latifa and supporting her, it is thanks in part to their work and the media attention that the UAE were forced to take the unprecedented step of confirming it had abducted Latifa” Haigh continued “now that we know Princess Latifa is alive, we are all focused, with Amnesty and Human Rights Watch and millions of supporters around the world on securing her freedom”

Read the full article by Peter O’Dwyer.

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/e7899f0c-444a-11e9-924d-9729bcd51a7f

 

About Free Latifa: The Free Latifa Campaign is run by Latifa’s best friend Tiina Jauhiainen and human rights lawyer and campaigner David Haigh with the support of Detained International and Stirling Haigh. Tiina Jauhiainen and David Haigh were appointed by Princess Latifa in 2018 as her sole representatives. Updates on the campaign to free Latifa can be found on the campaign website www.freelatifa.com

NBC News – Lester Holt features Princess Latifa story

The respected US TV news show NBC Tonight with Lester Holt, featured the story of Princess Latifa. The NBC team travelled to Cornwall to meet with Tiina Jauhiainen and David Haigh and filmed the Free Latifa campaign at work.

The NBC news piece, titled “This Princess has been missing for over a year” aired on the Lester Holt new show and is now available of n the NBC news app.

Tiina Jauhiainen spoke to NBC’s Matt Bradley after the first anniversary of the escape.

Princess Latifa’s lawyer at Stirling Haigh and Detained International, David Haigh said “We want to thank NBC for the considerable time they put into bringing the story of our friend and client Princess Latifa to the their viewers. Every day more and more people learn of brave Latifa’s quest for freedom and every day thousand more people support her, support which will ultimately lead to her freedom and ability to live the life she chooses for herself”

Watch the NBC News here

https://www.nbcnews.com/nightly-news/video/this-princess-has-been-missing-for-over-a-year-1455174723649

 

About Free Latifa: The Free Latifa Campaign is run by Latifa’s best friend Tiina Jauhiainen and human rights lawyer and campaigner David Haigh with the support of Detained International and Stirling Haigh. Tiina Jauhiainen and David Haigh were appointed by Princess Latifa in 2018 as her sole representatives. Updates on the campaign to free Latifa can be found on the campaign website www.freelatifa.com

Former Leeds United MD speaks to the Guardian on arrest of British tourist and football fan in Dubai.

Stirling Haigh and Detained International founder and managing director David Haigh is the former managing director of top English Football club Leeds United and former Chairman of Leeds United Ladies. He spoke with Dianie Taylor for the Guardian on the arrest and detention of British tourist Ali Issa Ahmad, 26, an Arsenal supporter from Wolverhampton, for wearing the football shirt of UAE rivals Qatar at an Asian Cup match in Dubai

David Haigh who now sits on the Football Association Inclusivity Advisory Group, with a special focus on on LGBT equality in football, called on the foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, and FCO officials to “act fast and tough”. “The Dubai jails are a cesspit of torture, injustice, discrimination and abuse,” he said.

Read the full article here.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/feb/06/friends-of-uk-football-fan-detained-in-uae-call-for-his-release-qatar

David Haigh in Huffington Post on Dubai Courts, Torture and UAE “Justice”

Stirling Haigh and Detained International founder and managing director David Haigh was featured in the Huffington Post in January 2019.

The Article, which concludes that the UK must not sacrifice free speech for trade links post Brexit sets outs David’s own fight for justice in the UAE.

The article states “Former Leeds United FC managing director David Haigh was arrested in Dubai…. He was in prison for 22 months during which time he claims he was repeatedly tortured and abused. He said he “faced the darkest ever moments a human never should face”. His allegations are being investigated by the Metropolitan Police War Crimes Unit. He told the Guardian: “The UK still encourages firms to invest in Emirati companies with the implicit assumption that they face fair business conditions. Again, the judicial situation makes it a highly risky country to do business with.”

Read the full article here:

https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/brexit-free-trade_uk_5c4838e8e4b03ad749a07e01?guccounter=1

David Haigh talks to the Times on client Princess Latifa Al Maktoum

Stirling Haigh and Detained International founder and managing director, spoke with Peter O’Dwyer of the Times in January 2019, updating the Middle Eastern desk on the United Nations Advocacy, legal fight and media campaign to secure freedom for Princess Latifa’s, and justice for Tiina Jauhiainen and the crew.

Read the full article here:

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/robinson-followed-dubai-script-on-princess-s-flight-says-lawyer-8fjl83sw7

David Haigh writes for the Independent on client Princess Latifa. “Mary Robinson has willingly tarnished her reputation”

Stirling Haigh and Detained International founder and managing director, writes for the Independent in January 2019 following the extraordinary interreference of former Irish President and UN Human Rights Commissioner, Mary Robinson in the case of his client Princess Latifa Al Maktoum. An intervention that has been met with worldwide condemnation from across the board for Mary Robinsons acts, including from Detained International, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

David Haigh concludes “Not only is this a clear misuse of Robinson’s former office as UN high commissioner for human rights, it undermines the movement for the fair treatment of women” he continues “Mary Robinson has willingly tarnished her reputation”

Read the full article here.

https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/mary-robinson-dubai-princess-latifa-escape-uae-sheikh-mohammed-haya-a8717081.html

About Free Latifa: The Free Latifa Campaign is run by Latifa’s best friend Tiina Jauhiainen and human rights lawyer and campaigner David Haigh with the support of Detained International and Stirling Haigh. Tiina Jauhiainen and David Haigh were appointed by Princess Latifa in 2018 as her sole representatives. Updates on the campaign to free Latifa can be found on the campaign website www.freelatifa.com

American university lecturer, 62, is being ‘held hostage’ in Dubai over unpaid $70,000 debt

An American academic has been ‘held hostage’ in the Middle Eastern city state of Dubai over an unpaid debt for more than a year and suffered a stroke while behind bars, his family revealed Tuesday.

David Oliver, 62, from Cincinnati, Ohio, was stripped of his passport and thrown in a prison cell by airport guards who allegedly bragged: ‘Look, we got an American.’

The creative writing lecturer had been living in Dubai with his ex-wife, working at the American University in the emirate.

But after 20 years in the region he was locked up when he lost his job and failed to repay a $70,000 debt. The country criminalizes debt and banks and landlords can send someone to jail with a document showing a check bounced.

Oliver’s nightmare stemmed from a $70,000 debt he incurred when living in Dubai with his then wife.

He took a loan out with the Sharjah Islamic Bank in 2014, but after he lost his job following a dispute with an Emirati co-worker and his then-wife, who is originally from Iran, flew back to the U.S.

Shortly after they were back on U.S. soil she asked for a divorce so he boarded a plane back to the Middle East to seek work in Bahrain.

But he was detained during a layover in Dubai as he flew from Bahrain to Kathmandu and ordered to repay the debt – which has now reached $100,000 thanks to charges – immediately.

Oliver claims he thought his ex-wife had been paying it off through their joint bank account, but says she had stopped.

He is banned from leaving the country until he repays the loan but has been stripped of his passport and visa so he can’t get a job.

The professor was put behind bars for two months at the notorious Sharjah Jail, where he suffered a mini stroke. He was freed to a mental hospital where he lived for seven months.

Oliver was previously diagnosed with bipolar disorder and has suffered from depression. His family say that he is desperately in need of healthcare – and is not getting help from the U.S. government, they told DailyMail.com

His sister Beverly Thornton, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, told DailyMail.com: ‘David has already been jailed for two months, then held for another seven months in a primitive mental hospital.’

Oliver’s sister said: ‘During the time in prison he was subjected to awful violence. Another prisoner even stole his front teeth implants.

‘He is mentally ill anyway and now trying to deal with the effects of a stroke.

‘He has been told he cannot return to the USA until his debt is paid. With the crazy interest and collection agency fees, the amount claimed has risen to USD $100,000.

‘Our family doesn’t have anything like that kind of money and we have been told David will soon be sent back to prison and stay there for good, or until the debt is paid in full.

‘We miss him terribly. This is a death sentence for a mentally ill man and stroke victim.

‘I just wish our government would do something to help, but all the embassy has done is give contact details for lawyers we can’t afford.

‘It’s as though the US government was more interested in trade deals than the safety of its citizens in Dubai.’

The family has set up a Go Fund Me in the hope of being able to help.

She added: ‘He was doing very well. He was married, working hard in a good job. But the stress of all these misfortunes at once has hit him hard.

‘David has tried to take his own life before and he sounds so down that I fear for his safety again.’

According to criminal justice campaigners Oliver has had three court hearings and each time was ordered to, ‘pay the banks or go to jail.’

Radha Stirling, CEO of the British-based NGO Detained In Dubai and managing partner of Stirling Haigh who is representing Oliver, called for the UAE to reform its financial laws.

She said Oliver has ‘zero chance’ of repaying his loan, adding: ‘He took the loan in good faith, but his circumstances changed beyond his control.

‘If the UAE had operational bankruptcy laws, David would likely be home already.

‘While there has been a lot of discussion over the past few years about implementing modern bankruptcy regulations, movement so far has been ineffective.

‘Unfortunately we have many similar cases in the UAE with people who can neither pay their debts nor leave Dubai to seek employment elsewhere.’

Stirling continued: ‘We are dealing with a number of people who are looking at spending the remainder of their lives in prison.

‘Even the people currently outside of prison are not allowed to work and when whatever money they had runs out, they are forced to beg for food or rely on charity.

‘Holding a debtor hostage in the hope they have a wealthy relative to bail them out is both immoral and unfair.’

She added: ‘When I spoke to David, he had clearly been emotionally damaged by the time in prison and the separation from his family.

‘He could not see any way out but holds hope that he will be reunited with his family again soon.’

The US embassy in the UAE is yet to respond to requests for a comment.

 

  Dailymail.com, Shanti Das For. “EXCLUSIVE: American University Lecturer, 62, Is Being ‘Held Hostage’ in Dubai over Unpaid $70,000 Debt – Where Authorities Refuse to Free Him despite Suffering a STROKE in Jail.” Daily Mail Online, Associated Newspapers, 28 Nov. 2017, www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5126465/American-lecturer-held-hostage-Dubai.html.           

 

 

British woman, 21, arrested in Dubai for ‘witnessing fight’ in hotel lobby

A young British woman was arrested and is being detained in Dubai after witnessing a physical altercation in a hotel lobby.

Asa Hutchinson, 21, of Chelmsford, in Essex, was held by police after a group of her male friends took selfies with a man in his 50s who had fallen asleep on a sofa.

The man, reported to be a technology company executive, allegedly began punching the pranksters when he woke up, a number of whom suffered blows to their heads.

Ms Hutchinson claims she was not present during the incident but has been charged with assault and theft and campaigners are now warning she faces the risk of jail.

She said: “The man woke up and began punching the boys. I heard the commotion and came back to see what was going on.

“He called the police and made official complaints about the boys for taking pictures of him and for being rude.”

The men had been visiting ex-pat Asa when the incident happened nearby Dusty’s bar in the DIFC district. They have since left Dubai, allegedly leading police to charge her as if she were responsible for their actions.

Radha Stirling, CEO of Detained in Dubai and managing partner of StirlingHaigh, said: “Visitors to the UAE need to be aware that justice does not operate the same way as it does in countries with mature legal systems.

“In Dubai, if two parties are in dispute or arguing, the first person to speak to the police is usually the one who is believed. Often it is a race to get to the police first.

“By making this complaint, the man may have been safeguarding himself from being charged himself.

“Also, it is clear in this case that Asa was a bystander, not involved with the fight and is only being victimised because the alleged culprits have left the country.”

Asa’s mother, Lucie, said: “You always worry about your kids, especially in these Middle Eastern countries.

“There is so much on the news about the way they treat British visitors, but Asa was having a great time.

“She loved the work and made so many friends. She is a quiet, sensible girl and really is the last person to start any trouble.”

Briton Jamie Harron was recently freed in Dubai, following a three-month imprisonment for touching a man’s hip.

The Standard has approached the Foreign Office for comment.

 

British Woman, 21, Arrested in Dubai for ‘Witnessing Fight’ in Hotel Lobby, www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/british-woman-21-arrested-in-dubai-for-witnessing-fight-in-hotel-lobby/ar-BBFUk7V?li=AAmiR2Z&MSCC=1511966174&ocid=spartanntp.