Emirates’ Laws Trap a Doctor Just Passing Through

For more than seven months, Dr. Karabus, 78, a pediatric oncologist, has been trapped in the United Arab Emirates, fighting charges of manslaughter and forgery linked to his treatment of a 3-year-old patient with a severe form of leukemia who had died under his care.

Unbeknown to him, Dr. Karabus had been convicted in absentia in 2003 and sentenced to three years in prison, a stark example of foreign professionals who are drawn to the gulf only to get caught up in Emirati justice. He would be tried again, the authorities told him, according to his daughter, Dr. Sarah Karabus, this time facing the charges in person. Even after a medical committee concluded that he had done nothing wrong and a judge acquitted him of all charges on March 21, Dr. Karabus remains in the emirates, unable to fly home because the prosecution has decided to appeal the judge’s decision.