Dubai Prosecution has warned parents against electronic blackmailing of their teenage children, following increasing numbers of such crimes.
Mohammed Ali Rustom, Dubai Advocate-General, Head of Family and Juvenile Prosecution, said that his department is receiving increasing numbers of this type of cases.
“Those below 18 are often subjected to Internet blackmailing, especially through social media to which all children have access because of lack of parental control,” he said.
The situation is aggravated by the trust that parents place in adults to take care of their children.
In one such case, a 35-year-old Asian football coach exploited some teenage trainees that he transported to and from their home in his car and forced them into immoral acts.
He then threatened them with posting the indecent pictures on social media to force them to continue to please him sexually and not to report him to elders.
The coach used to always change the route so as to leave a different teenager to be dropped off last, he said. He groped all teenagers whom he dropped in his vehicle.
The coach got closer to a 15-year-old trainee, whom he transported to and from home, through Facebook.
One day, the 15-year-old was the last to be dropped.
“He dropped all my friends and then he diverted his car to an isolated sandy area behind a school and stopped. He then sat next to me on the back seat and started groping me. Then he pushed me onto the seat and asked me to take off my dress. He assaulted me and took my nude pictures. He threatened to post them on social media if I stopped pleasing him,” said the victim.
The teenager told his parents who reported the crime to the police.
Investigations revealed that the coach had acted similarly with all members of the group of teenagers whom he transported.
Bu Abdullah asked parents to protect their children from electronic blackmailing by getting closer to them emotionally. This will encourage teenagers to seek parents’ help or advice if were subjected to any assault or blackmailing. Parents should be aware that some with criminal tendencies, have exploited the information technology.
He also asked parents not to put all their trust in people they may know without close attention and follow up.