Belgian hunger-striker collapses in Dubai jail cell
A hunger-striker in Dubai Central Prison collapsed on Thursday morning, the third day of his total starvation regime.
Belgian expat Oliver Loeb, 51, was in Dubai's court waiting to be taken for a scheduled hearing when he slumped to the floor of his holding cell, according to fellow prisoners.
A source at Dubai Court confirmed that a prisoner had been taken ill.
Loeb this week told 7DAYS that he would rather die than stay in jail.
He is just five months into a two-year sentence after cheques he wrote for his business bounced when an investor failed to pay promised capital.
A prisoner said this morning: "He was totally unconscious. Nobody knows where he was taken and nobody knows how he is yet."
Loeb, who joined Irish expat Chris Renehan on a hunger strike four weeks ago, collapsed 10 days ago and was taken to a medical facility inside Dubai Police HQ.
They gave him a glucose and saline drip and sent him back to prison a day later.
Three days ago, he said he would now be refusing fluids.
Yesterday, on the eve of his collapse, he told 7DAYS: "If they force-feed me what is the point? I will just refuse water again when they send me back to jail."
Loeb had three successful general trading companies in Dubai, but hit trouble when an investor pulled out and around Dhs3million-worth of security cheques Loeb had signed were sent to the bank and bounced.
Renehan said: "We are trying to find out where Oliver has been taken and how he is. We know he was unconscious."
The 38-year-old Irishman began his hunger strike after being told he is not “authorised” to sign for millions of dirhams his construction company is owed and which would pay off the bounced security cheques he wrote and see him freed.