x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Couple says deportation would end in their deaths

Husband and wife convicted of murder and consensual sex say family in Pakistan would kill them if they were returned there.

ABU DHABI // A husband convicted of murder and his wife, convicted of consensual sex, pleaded with a judge today to prevent their deportation because they would be in danger in their home country.

SK, from Pakistan, killed his cousin after he walked in on him in bed with his wife, SZ. SK and SZ were both sentenced to two years in prison followed by deportation on June 8, after the victim's blood relatives pardoned SK.

SZ, also form Pakistan, had originally confessed to the charge of sex out of wedlock, but changed her testimony to consensual sex. A married Muslim woman charged with sex out of wedlock would face stoning to death under Sharia law.

Throughout the hearings, she constantly asked the judge not to sentence her to deportation because if she were returned to Pakistan, her family would kill her to preserve their honour.

Yesterday at the Criminal Court of First Instance, SK also asked from a "humanitarian" aspect not to be deported because he would be killed as well.

He previously told the judge that the blood relatives claimed forgiveness because they wanted to take revenge with their own hands.

Both are currently serving their sentences in prison. The decision on deportation will be announced on Monday.

hdajani@thenational.ae