Scottish grandad detained in Dubai avoids jail after Hogmanay row

Ian Mackellar was due to return to Scotland earlier this year but had to remain in Dubai indefinitely over the New Year's incident.

A Scottish grandfather who was detained in Dubai has avoided jail time after being accused of trespassing.

Ian Mackellar was facing charges of trespassing and verbal assault after complaining about a noisy neighbour while looking after his infant grandchild in the United Arab Emirates.

The 75-year-old became involved in an altercation on New Year’s Eve when one of his daughter’s neighbours hosted a party, with loud music blaring out until the early hours in the morning, advocacy group Detained in Dubai told STV News.

It is said he had messaged his daughter’s neighbours to keep the noise down and be mindful of the fact there was an 18-month-old child next door.

When the music was played louder, Mr McKellar visited the neighbours while carrying his granddaughter to ask again to keep the noise down, Detained in Dubai claimed.

When nobody responded at the door, Mr McKellar headed down an open side path to the garden. He could see guests in attendance, so asked them if they could move the party indoors.

But it is alleged that multiple guests started pushing him backwards, causing him to stumble. He claims that drinks were thrown over him and his granddaughter while attempting to leave.

Mr Mackellar intended to file a police report regarding what had happened that night, but a complaint was launched against him for trespassing before he could.

Mr Mackellar’s wife, Carol, told STV News that her husband was taken to a local police station after officers came to her daughter’s apartment on January 2.

They were both scheduled to return to Scotland on January 10 but she was forced to leave her husband behind as he faced his charges.

Mr Mackellar, from Newtonhill near Stonehaven, was facing a potential prison sentence or a fine of up to AED 10,000 due to the UAE laws on trespassing.

On Monday, over a month after his arrest, government officials in Dubai confirmed that the retired lecturer was free to leave the Gulf state.

The court also imposed a £650 fine following the incident.

Government of Dubai Media Office said: “Dubai Public Prosecution today confirmed that an expedited ruling was issued by the emirates One Day Court in the case involving British national Ian Mackellar.

“After consideration of the charges of trespassing and verbal assault, the court imposed a fine of £650.”

Detained in Dubai has been contacted for comment.

STV News is now on WhatsApp

Get all the latest news from around the country

Follow STV News
Follow STV News on WhatsApp

Scan the QR code on your mobile device for all the latest news from around the country

WhatsApp channel QR Code
Posted in