x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Ten years' jail for camel dispute killer

Herder who stabbed a man to death in row over a camel sale is sentenced to ten years in prison.

DUBAI // A herder who stabbed a man to death in a fight over a camel sale was today sentenced to 10 years in prison.

SA, a 24-year-old from Sudan, confessed in the Dubai Criminal Court to killing his compatriot Mohammed Abbas Babikir, but denied it was premeditated.

The herder was seen arguing with Babikir on December 9 last year at a farm near the Dubai-Al Ain highway.

The herder told prosecutors the argument was over his share of the profits in a camel sale.

Mohammed Abdel Bagy, 26, another Sudanese herder, said he was standing about 100 metres away and witnessed the argument.

"When I saw the two physically fighting I ran across to break them apart," said Mr Abdel Bagy. "When I reached them I saw Mohammed on the floor bleeding profusely and holding his stomach, and [SA] standing next to him holding a small knife that was covered in blood."

Forensic reports show Babikir was stabbed twice - once in the stomach and once in the heart.

Mr Abdel Bagy told prosecutors Babikir had died in his arms.

"I laid his head on a rock and watched him spit out blood while taking his last breaths," he said.

Another herder from Sudan, Al Siddig Mohammed Ali, 42, grabbed SA when he saw Babikir had died.

"I was on the other side of the farm when I saw Mohammed Abdel Bagy running," Mr Al said.

"I followed him, then I saw Babikir lying dead and [SA] holding a knife covered in blood, so I grabbed him and took the knife away from him and called a friend to come and try to revive the victim."

His compatriot, Hayder Ajab, 42, told prosecutors that he picked up Babikir, placed him in his car and drove out to the motorway to meet the ambulance and police responding to the call.

A police officer who interrogated SA told prosecutors he confessed to the killing, claiming he had a financial dispute with Babikir.

Khaled Salim Al Alwai from Public Prosecution asked Judge Maher Salam Al Mahdi to impose the death penalty. The court also ordered SA to pay Babikir's family Dh21,000 as temporary compensation as well as Dh1,000 to cover lawyer fees.

SA will be deported after serving his prison term.

salamir@thenational.ae