South African professor not guilty, UAE court finds

An elderly doctor who has been detained in the United Arab Emirates since August, was finally found not guilty by an Abu Dhabi judge yesterday.

Professor Cyril Karabus, from South Africa, who had his trial postponed 15 times, is waiting for his passport to be returned so he can travel home in time for Pesach.

Professor Karabus was convicted in absentia of manslaughter by a UAE court more than 10 years ago. The prosecution claimed that in 2002 the doctor, who had previously worked in the UAE, had mistreated a terminally ill Yemeni girl who had leukaemia.

Professor Karabus, unaware of his conviction, stopped off in Dubai on August 18 last year as he travelled back to South Africa from his son’s wedding in Toronto.

The 78-year-old doctor has been in detained in Abu Dhabi since then.

The court decision on Thursday came after 10-strong medical committee found that Professor Karabus had not mistreated the patient.

“The judge said he was absolved entirely and found not guilty. He was over the moon, shouting and screaming. We are now working on getting his passport back and bringing him home in time for Pesach,” said family lawyer Michael Bagraim.

However, the prosecution has two weeks to launch an appeal and have retained Professor Karabus’s passport. “They’re doing everything in their power to frustrate us," said Mr Bagraim.

Last updated: 2:40pm, March 22 2013