Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 9 July 2020

Couple killed by intruder during Dubai villa break-in, police confirm

Two teenage girls aged 13 and 18 survived the attack, which officers said was carried out by a former maintenance worker

Latest: Tributes to couple killed by intruder as daughters prepare to take parents' bodies home

A couple died after being attacked by an intruder in their Dubai home, police said.

The husband and wife were found dead on Thursday at their villa in Arabian Ranches.

Their two children, aged 13 and 18, were at home at the time. The elder daughter was stabbed when she came face to face with the suspect, but escaped with minor injuries.

The Indian consul general in Dubai identified the deceased couple as Hiren Adhiya and Vidhi Adhiya.

Officers rushed to the scene and cordoned off the Mirador district.

Dubai Police CID chief Brig Jamal Al Jalaf said the attacker climbed over an external wall and found a ground floor patio door unlocked.

When the 18-year-old daughter woke up and saw her parents in a pool of blood, the attacker stabbed her in the neck and escaped

Brigadier Jamal Al Jalaf, Dubai Police CID

He found Dh2,000 in a wallet on the ground floor but went upstairs in search of jewellery.

When Mr Adhiya awoke, the suspect stabbed him to death before turning on his wife.

"When the 18-year-old daughter woke up and saw her parents in a pool of blood, the attacker stabbed her in the neck and escaped,” Brig Al Jalaf said.

Officers combing the area found a knife that had been tossed about a kilometre away, Brig Al Jalaf said. The attacker's fingerprints and DNA were used to track him down in another emirate, though police did not say which.

The two girls are being looked after by friends and Indian embassy officials.

Brig Al Jalaf said the suspect, a Pakistani, was part of a maintenance team who worked on the family's home two years ago. At the time, the man, who was later left unemployed, saw the family had large quantities of money and jewellery and returned to rob them.

Officers did not name the family but they were identified by Indian media in their home state of Gujarat.

Hiren Adhiya was an senior director at a Sharjah oil and gas contractor.

Vipul, India's consul general to Dubai, said consular officials were supporting the two daughters.

"One daughter was injured and is back from hospital," he told The National.

"We are in touch with the family friends, the community and local authorities about the case.”

Residents of Arabian Ranches, a gated community, were shaken as details of the attack emerged.

In the quiet villa community, tenants and homeowners said they usually left doors leading to gardens and garages open.

“This is a shock because this is one of the most peaceful communities in Dubai,” said Jeevan D’mello, who has lived in the Ranches for 16 years.

“Something like this has never happened in the past. People do leave their garage door open. This is not just with the Ranches but people do this all over Dubai. This appears to be a one-off incident but it just shows that we should always take precautions.”

Another resident who lived in the community for 11 years said neighbours were cautious after the killing.

“This is unheard of. Petty thefts were what we heard about, like bicycles stolen from the garage,” said the resident, who did not want to be named.

“I left my garden door open, many others did so too. Since last week people are keeping their doors closed and locked.”

In November, residents reported a spate of burglaries in Arabian Ranches 2.

Thieves took advantage of the tendency for families to leave doors unlocked and keep wallets and phones by entrances.

At the time, police said they had installed more than 1,200 security cameras in residential areas and urged residents to be vigilant where necessary.

“Dubai Police are keen on strengthening security by implementing these plans to reduce crime rates,” Col Rashid Abdurrahman bin Dhaboui said at the time.

Neighbours in the upscale community said they often leave their doors and garages unlocked. Pawan Singh / The National
Neighbours in the upscale community said they often leave their doors and garages unlocked. Pawan Singh / The National

Updated: June 24, 2020 06:07 PM

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