'Fake' firefighter admits to helping at high-rise fire
The man, wearing a firefighter's uniform, sneaked into a hotel during a fire; he claimed he was firefighter and volunteered to help
By Mary Nammour
DUBAI — A man, who allegedly wore a firefighter's uniform and sneaked into a five-star hotel as it was on fire, claimed before the court that he was indeed a firefighter and he volunteered that night to help.
The 34-year-old Emirati is accused in the Court of First Instance of impersonating a public officer while wearing the firefighters' uniform, and behaving in contempt of the efforts made by firefighters to put out the blaze that broke out on New Year's Eve.
He is believed to have filmed himself inside the hotel during the fire in which he claimed that he had it under control. The defendant denied that he posted the clip online and claimed he only shared it with few contacts on WhatsApp. He also said that he was given the uniform by the team controlling the fire that night as he wanted to help.
He was arrested shortly after the incident. During the investigation, the accused was referred to hospital to be mentally examined. He was found to be aware of his doings. The man's mobile phone, which he allegedly used to film the clip, has been seized and used by the Public Prosecution as evidence.
A police officer, who interrogated the defendant, said: "He confessed that he used his uniform. And made the clip of himself, talking about how he had the fire under control. He also confessed to sharing it with his friends".
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