The framework of the criminal law of Dubai is greatly influenced by the Sharia Law, which is the religious law and moral code of Islam. Sharia deals with issues such as sexuality, crimes, marriage, liquor, gambling, dress codes and other matters. For non-Muslims or foreigners that have violated laws in UAE, Sharia law is still acknowledged and applied.
It is always wise to know the basics laws and regulations of the country you are in, whether you are a local, expatriated or tourist. You may not want to break any law or regulations and be caught unaware of it. Not knowing the law is never an excuse.
For countries in UAE, the criminal laws are a bit conservative. UAE is an assembly of Muslim countries that are strict in its ethics, moral and religion. Though Dubai is an establish tourist spot where a great piece of the population are foreigners, this remains the same.
The best way to live freely in UAE is to know at least the basics of their rules and regulations. These will save you from innocently committed crimes and violations during your stay.
- The Dubai Penal Code is very clear on its rules of public displays of affection. For example, only married couples are allowed to hold hands in public. But that is the only display of affection that is tolerated. Violations of this code such as hugging, kissing, cuddling in public may cause you deportation out of Dubai.
- Offensive gestures and behavior such as swearing are considered a grave public offence. Offenders of this law are subject to fine, deportation or imprisonment.
- All residents and tourists must show respect to the symbols of UAE (flag, national emblem) and religion. If these are abused, violators are punished by either payment of fines, imprisonment or deportation.
- Dress code is also a part in the criminal law of Dubai. No one should dress up inappropriately by revealing too much of their skin. Clothes must be in appropriate lengths.
- Smoking is only allowed in designated areas. You are not allowed to smoke in malls, shops or offices.
- Taking photos of people without permission is prohibited. This gets worse when photos of women and families are taken without consent.
- Dancing and playing loud music at public areas are forbidden. This includes the park, residential areas or beach. Bars and clubs must acquire a dancing permit or license before it can allow its customers to dance.
These are only a few of the criminal laws and penal codes that must be remembered. The list just consists of the obvious and common crimes that expatriates must be aware of.