back to article Big Brother firm tech exec locked up in UAE

The head of technology at TV production firm Endemol has spent almost two weeks in jail in Dubai without charge, accused of drug smuggling. Cat Le-Huy, a 31-year-old London resident known to friends as "Diz", was arrested on arrival at Dubai International Airport on January 26. A German national, he was on his way to visit a …


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  1. Cameron Colley

    Make me wonder why people bother.

    Stories like this make me wonder why people bother to travel to these third-world styled moron-run countries.

  2. Repo
    Thumb Up

    Here's an idea...

    Why don't we send the rest of the Big Brother production team to UAE (after carefully rubbing cannabis resin on their luggage)? Then we can be rid of this abomination of a TV programme and nevermore endure media reports regarding some boring retard trying to make it as high as becoming a Z list "celebrity".

  3. miknik
    Paris Hilton

    Spin off opportunity?

    With the popularity of Big Brother on the wane maybe "Banged up in Dubai" will pull in more viewers?

    Paris cos she knows all about being in clink

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    their preferred approach would be to stick a camera in his cell and make us sit through the next four years with him.

  5. Adam Williamson
    Thumb Down


    You're quite right - I *hate* travelling to England.

    And anywhere else, for that matter.

    The second time I arrived here in Canada I was pulled out of the customs line by a lovely guy who body searched me (twice), pulled my luggage apart and went through it four times, and declared my wallet had tested positive for cocaine residues (where's that article saying that 90% of U.K. banknotes test positive for cocaine?) I was unwillingly detained for two hours, accused of being on drugs "because I looked nervous and my pupils were dilated" (no shit, you just pulled me off a thirteen hour plane flight with no sleep and accused me of being a drug smuggler, wouldn't *you* be a tad nervous?), and eventually let me go with the charming words "I think you're lying to me, but I can't prove anything so I have to let you go."

    The third time I went to the States I was kept in an immigration barn in Atlanta airport for five hours with no information as to why I was there, before they questioned me for ten minutes and then let me go.

    Moral of the story - travelling's a bitch and anyone in a position of authority at an airport is likely to be a power-tripping twat. *Any* airport. Any country.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    cue Nelson saying "Ha Ha!"

    Third world ? Maybe, but having travelled on holiday there with the wife and kids a couple of times over the last few years I'd say it was far more civilised in many aspects than Britain. I wouldn't want to be one of the immigrant workers there, but as a Brit family travelling to the place we were treated with far more manners and respect than we were by US immigration for a holiday there, or by British passport control on our return home.

    I find it difficult to feel any sympathy with anyone who works for a company that makes Big Brother. If I were to compile a top ten of reasons to emigrate BB is in there.

  7. Anonymous Coward

    Midde east holidays

    I know people who've gone to Dubai for a holiday, fuck knows why.

    They couldn't buy booze for love nor money, and would have ended up with this guy in jail if they had. And if you go during Ramadan good luck getting some food before sundown too.

    Add to that rude fuckers giving your wife dirty looks if she so much as shows a forearm, and pretty much everyone treating you like a walking wallet. it also makes me wonder why anyone would go to these type of places for fun.

    I'm sure this guy is loving the adventure of facing 4 years minimum in a medieval dungeon.

  8. Joe K

    Human rights? Never heard of it

    Anyone see that poor kid who was raped by 3 HIV infected men while on holiday there in November? The police called the kid a homo and threatened HIM with a year in jail.

    Great place.

  9. yeah, right.

    used to want to go there.

    I used to want to work there. I've actually worked there, and it's quite nice for the richer classes. But stories like this make me rethink that desire. Third-world, religious nutter legal systems like this should not be be encouraged. Unfortunately, they seem to be quite popular with the rich crowd. The crowd that DOESN'T get tested at airports.

    One law for the rich, another for everyone else. I guess they've followed their mentors well. The US and the UK both also have such systems, although a little less blatant.

  10. JohnG

    Stopover in UAE

    I had the misfortune to have a stopover in UAE on the way back from Thailand a few months ago. It was enough to put me off visiting anywhere in that region again. Judging by the state of the airport, i hate to think what the prisons are like.

  11. Hate2Register

    Possession of panadol: 4 years

    I would suggest strengthening our anti-drug efforts against Dubius citizens (especially government officials) visiting the UK. This is strictly in support of their own zero-tolerance policy. Thus, Dubians found with contolled substances at the airport would be jailed for 4 years. Controlled substances in Dubai include poppy seeds, and Panadol Ultra (which contains codeine). So we should help the Dubai government by sending police into UK supermarkets to ensure that the Dubai citizens do not lapse when on holiday, for instance drinking cider and then having a panadol. In fact, even having a headache (without permission) should result in a good whipping.

    Actually, I think the UAE laws are stupid (come on, poppy seeds and panadol!). Mind you, chewing gum is illegal in Singapore and they must have clean pavements (gasp).

    Maybe we're just too liberal?

  12. Cameron Colley

    @ Adam William

    Yeah, we have it tough over here, it's true. The US, also, is pretty immoral with it's drug laws. The difference, however, is that it's not possible to be sent to prison in any western country I know for merely having seen cannabis or breathed in the smoke -- there's a slight difference between being detained ,or even being cavity searched, and being locked up for 4 years ;~).

    Mind you, you can be shot for having a dark skin and running, I suppose...

  13. tony trolle
    Paris Hilton

    in SoCal

    I believe in LA they have a few venting machines for cannabis; however you have to have your 420 medical card (about 60 pounds)

  14. HFoster


    He can probably keep Grooverider company then...

  15. Risky

    Holy smoke

    Perhaps we could bring in a religious figure to help the situation - the Archbishop of Canterbury........maybe not.......coat, no not the cassock,

  16. Steve Wehrle

    Forged Documents

    If I were a Middle-Eastern immigration official, I suppose I'd be a bit suspicious about someone who has ID documents with the name "Cat". That's just got to be the worst attempt at forging documents on the planet!

    Or maybe the charge would be "associating with Jade Goody"? Worth a 10-year stretch in any sensible legal establishment.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Stories like this make me wonder why people bother to travel to these third-world styled moron-run countries."

    Describing a place where they build entire islands to do development on and are in the process of constructing a 3000-some-foot skyscraper out of change they found in the couch as 'third-world' is somewhat ignorant.

    Dubai in particular is known to be fairly tolerant, and *must* be because international business is... well, its business. Without westerners feeling comfortable traveling and living there, they've got nothing. So this is quite odd.

    Asinine? Yeah. But it doesn't make sense in the context of the society and economy of Dubai. My best guess is that some overzealous twit got his knickers in a twist, and that this will go away quietly in a week or two.

  18. Matt McFaul

    Watch the YouTube Video

    I made this Protest song about the case to highlight Cat Le-Huy's plight: he sits opposite me at work:

    Here it is:

  19. Simon Gardner


    This guys is a friend, please sign the petition ...

  20. Mel Allezbleu


    Sort it out guys - instead of bitching about how bad Big Brother is, think about if it was your brother, son, or husband imprisoned like this with no idea on when they will get out.

    Leave BB to the moo-ing masses. Lets concentrate on the more important stuff huh?

  21. Samson David

    Third world countries

    I lived in Dubai for 31 years, was born there and finally decided to move. Its one this to call the place amazing and marvellous etc. Sure it is, if youre light skinned and if you have money.

    You see a very different picture if youre one of the people who's blood and sweat Dubai is built on. Working for less than 50 pounds a month in 50 degree heat with your employer not paying you for months on end. If you complain, you get a "settlement" which is half of what youre owed and booted out of the country.

    The only reason no one says anything about the human rights abuses that go on there are either 1) they dont know about the prisons in the middle of the desert. Where people are in jail for years with very little evidence (usually in the form of forced confessions or where theyre made to sign a confession in another language). Did you know you could go to jail for bouncing a cheque..? And in jail, you have no access to your accounts, and until you pay your cheque off (try earning money while in jail), you can be kept in prison.

    People are imprisoned with no access to their consulates, lawyers and families. This isnt "civilized". Sure you can be kept in an airport in the US without charge for hours. In Dubai you can go to prison without a charge. And forget "I get a phone call and a lawyer" crap.

    Sure its modern and they have money. The mentality of a lot of people there is still the same as it was when they lived in the middle of a desert in a tent. Where a boy who was raped by 3 HIV positive men "couldnt be telling the truth because he hasnt yet been tested as HIV positive himself" or a guy who has no job and many wives plans to "keep marrying and divorcing wives till he manages to father a 100 children" rates a mention in a newspaper as a good thing.

    The reason I moved away..? I had a good job and everything, I just couldnt live with the ethics of living a luxurious lifestyle on the backs of so many other exploited.

  22. Samson David

    For weird and wacky news about Dubai..

    see the secret dubai blog.

    One of the latest story there..? A guy from yemen who's in court for trying to sell a "bullet proof stone" for half a BILLION dollars.

    See the latest on the obscene jail terms for "drugs". Sucks to be you if youre not someone who's got connections like at Austin person who got caught with drugs a few years ago.

  23. Sarinako

    Comments like this won't help anyone!

    Cat happens to work for Endemol. So what! It's a company like any other and surely it shouldn't provide any grounds for your stupid and thoughtless comments. You talk about morons? Why not start addressing yourself? A person's life is at the verge of changing A LOT, and if people don't act to help him but instead waste time making stupid comments about a TV program his situation might never change. I want to help. And I want this help to be successful for any other future case. Dubai has some weird laws that obviously put most of us at risk to end up just like Cat, I don't want this to happen. And I want Cat to be able to return to his family and friends ASAP.

    If you feel the need to bitch about BB find some other blog but this is definitely not an appropriate place!

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