Lack of family attention topped the list of reasons why juveniles commit crimes, according to Family and Juveniles Prosecution in Dubai.
Speaking to Emirates24|7, Advocate-General Mohammed Rostom, Head of Family and Juveniles Prosecution in Dubai, said theft topped the list of crimes juveniles commit in Dubai and added that lack of family attention is the main reason for juveniles crimes.
Last year, the Prosecution received 286 juveniles cases compared to 295 cases in 2013, he added.
“Juveniles commit crimes for many reasons. The main reason is the lack of family attention. Parents of these juveniles are either divorced, and if they are together they are busy with their own lives and do not pay attention to their kids. Our statistics shows 70 per cent of the juveniles are living in families that are facing problems with each other, and parents fight in front of their children.” Children steal to gain attention, he added.
He pointed out that in many cases, the other main reason for juvenile crimes is bad friends and companions.
“Sometimes, teens or children are good, their families are good and caring, but they choose bad friends. In these cases, these children live with two personalities, a good and polite personality in front of their families, and another bad personality with their friends to please them and be friends with them and be part of the gang.”
He added that bad friends have serious effect on children and teens. “They drag them into the bad habits, and they can end up in committing serious crimes.”
“Families should pay attention to their children and teens. They must know their friends, and whom they are going out with. It is very easy to solve these problems in the beginning. If parents know that their kids are going out with bad friends, they must stop them from doing so, but in a reasonable and convincing way, not by forcing them.”
Advocate-General Mohammed added that 95 per cent of juveniles are boys, and assaults are the second top crime they commit after theft.
He added that the third top crime is driving without licence, and fourth is drugs, either addiction, or trade.
He added that the procedures they take with juveniles vary depending on their cases.
“If we receive a juvenile accused in an assault cases, it also depends on what type of assault. It can be that he stabbed somebody, or seriously injured them.”
He added that some cases are withheld by the prosecution if they reach an agreement between the juvenile and the other party. “In other cases which are referred to the court, the judge might sentence the juvenile to be under supervision for a period of time to see whether they commit another crime or not, they might be sentenced to serve a jail term, or sometimes given vocational training.”