Sex on beach Briton, Vince Acors, speaks out for first time

December 30, 2008

From Times Online
Sex on beach Briton, Vince Acors, speaks out for first time

Vince Acors admitted his foolishness today

Vince Acors admitted his foolishness today

Nico Hines
A British businessman today spoke out for the first time about his conviction for having sex on a beach in Dubai, saying that he had been “extremely naive” but claiming that the verdict against him was unjust.
Vince Acors and Michelle Palmer were caught embracing on Jumeirah beach six months ago. Mr Acors denied that they had been having sex, but said that the court had felt compelled to throw the book at him and Ms Palmer because of global media coverage of the case. The couple are no longer together.
“Because of the worldwide publicity, I feel that the Dubai authorities had no real choice other than to find us guilty in this situation,” he told a press conference in London today, the first time he has spoken about the incident in detail since he was arrested.
He revealed nonetheless that he was preparing to return to the tiny Gulf state under whose strict morality laws he was convicted.
Mr Acors, 34, from Bromley, South East London, said much of what was reported about his case was exaggerated and some was “complete lies”. He denied that he and Ms Palmer, of Oakham, Rutland, had had sexual intercourse but he admitted they had “physical contact” in a public place.
The incident happened within hours of his arrival in the oil-rich state, after he attended one of the Emirate’s popular Friday all-you-can-drink champagne brunches. He said he has no idea how much he drank that day because the waiters continually topped up his glass.
“At no point did we deny that we had consumed vast quantities of alcohol,” he said. “Dubai is a massive contradiction – everything is available yet everything is illegal.”
He met Ms Palmer at another venue later on. Mr Acors said that the pair had intended to go back to the hotel where he was staying, but that by an unhappy coincidence they ended up at the beach instead The couple took a taxi, but they were dropped off by the driver at Jumeirah beach instead of the Jumeira Beach Residence, where Mr Acors was staying during a three-day business trip in July.
“We just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time,” he said. “In retrospect it seems quite laughable but it’s been six months and the laughter has stopped.”
He said that he had been ignorant of the severity of Dubai’s laws but hoped that the account of his misfortune would help educate other travellers visiting the Middle East.
Mr Acors said he hoped to return to Dubai to continue the business venture he had travelled to the city to discuss. His telecommunications company provides text message services for the media industry.
The businessman was speaking at a press conference in Central London today, he said he had convened the meeting to correct some of the stories that had been written about him. He also admitted that he wanted to make some money by selling his story.
“I’m acutely aware of how we’ve been portrayed,” he said. “And to be honest I need to try and recoup some of the money I’ve lost.”
Mr Acors explained that his mistake had been extremely expensive as he had been forced to pay for accommodation for the six months he was in Dubai on bail but unable to leave the city.
Mr Acors and Ms Palmer, who was then working in Dubai as a publishing executive, were sentenced to three months in prison for having sex in a public place and having sex outside marriage but they were both pardoned before being deported.
After a series of administrative delays, Mr Acors returned to the UK on Christmas Eve. Ms Palmer also returned from Dubai this month.


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