Lee Bradley Brown Inquest jury verdict - Death in Dubai Police Custody
After a 5 day Inquest into the death of Lee Bradley Brown at Bur Dubai Police Station, a jury has found that Lee most likely died from a combination of beatings, lack of food and water and lack of access to medical care. The jury also noted the additional factors of a lack of access to consular services, lack of clothing and Dubai police authorities neglect.
Outside the Coroners Court.
The Coroner will produce a report to the FCDO entitled Preventing Future Deaths. The FCDO has been heavily criticised by current and former inmates for their lack of care and diligence. Since Lee’s death, dozens have reported violence, beatings and torture by UAE authorities. Grandfather Albert Douglas was severely beaten and suffered broken bones and significant injuries. “It is imperative that we can be assured of our safety when visiting allied countries”, said Radha Stirling, founder of Detained in Dubai and a witness in the Inquest.
Stirling raised the fact that the FCDO’s travel advice conflicts with concerns from British courts. “I explained to the Coroners Court that British courts decline extradition requests on the basis of the ‘real risk of unfair trials, discrimination, human rights abuses and torture’. If the British courts believe citizens are at risk of human rights abuses and torture, the FCDO’s travel advice should reflect exactly that”.
Lee Bradley Brown died in 2011 and it has taken over a decade for his family to finally succeed in proving that he died as a direct result of and under the care of Dubai authorities. Several witnesses affirmed he was brutally killed by authorities at Bur Dubai police station. Authorities in Dubai promised to share the CCTV footage to “prove their innocence”, but this statement was later retracted and authorities refused to share the video with British officials.
Lee's mother Doris Brown issued a statement after the verdict, "For the past 11 years we have had to fight to find out how Lee died and so I am incredibly relieved that the Inquest has finally uncovered the precise circumstances in which my son lost his life. My son was a good person who loved both me and his dad very much. He died in the most awful of circumstances being allowed to be beaten by other prisoners and, most shockingly, those who were supposed to look after him. He was not given proper food or appropriate care. I cannot imagine how awful his last moments must have been. It makes me incredibly sad and angry. I can’t believe that he died at the hands of savage monsters when he had done nothing wrong. They made up lies about him and took my life too. He was my life.’
Mr Imran Khan KC said: ‘The jury’s findings paint a painful picture of Lee’s final moments before he died. The fact that Lee was so badly treated and neglected was well-known to his family for the past 11 years. It should never have taken this long and caused so much distress to his family to get this official recognition. Lee should never have lost his life in these awful circumstances. His death and the Inquest findings have shed light on the way in which British individuals are detained and treated in Dubai. The fact that the jury found that the lack of consular services may have contributed to Lee’s death highlights that greater efforts should be made by the UK government to provide assistance to those who need it in foreign jurisdictions. It could save lives in the future. This is of particular concern given that British Citizens will be travelling to Qatar for the football Word Cup this month.’
Radha Stirling added“We are pleased to finally have a form of conclusion in the death of Lee Bradley Brown but without the cooperation of the Dubai police, the findings leave many questions unanswered. The UAE authorities do not appear to have learned any lessons. There have been no consequences for the Emirates and we continue to receive reports of abuse, violence and torture”, Stirling said in a statement. “Dubai authorities should release Albert Douglas, a British grandfather who has suffered horrific injuries from being beaten by prison guards. The trauma he has endured is unimaginable and especially at his age and frailty. Albert suffers from a heart condition and the head injuries sustained from his beatings require ongoing treatment. Given his abuse, Albert should be released and reunited with his family who worry every day that he will end up like Lee Bradley Brown”.