x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Drunk labourer murders co-worker, court hears

A labourer who got drunk at his accommodation stabbed his co-worker to death, a court heard.

DUBAI // A worker got drunk at his company's labour camp and stabbed his friend in the chest, killing him instantly, a court heard this morning.

ZM, 26, of Myanmar, told presiding Judge Hamad Abdul Latif at the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance this morning that the victim was his friend.

"I don't understand. He was my friend. I didn't kill him," ZM told the court.

The murder happened at around 11pm on April 23 last year next to the refrigerators at the Dalsco company's accommodations in Al Qouz area.

ZM sat quietly, smoking about 20 metres away from the victim ZN, and drank a bottle of alcohol, records said. The victim was also drinking liquor shortly before he was stabbed, records said.

"Yes, I drank alcohol, but I didn't kill my friend," ZM told the court, adding that he cannot afford a lawyer.

He went to the kitchen at the labour camp, picked up a knife and returned to his spot, prosecutors said.

He watched his friend for about 15 minutes, then walked slowly towards him, and allegedly stabbed him in the top of his chest.

The victim threw his weight at his attacker in a way that appeared to a security guard as if the two were hugging each other, records show.

OK, the security guard, said he went to the men and pulled the defendant away, records said.

The victim fell to the ground in a kneeling position. His hands were on his heavily bleeding chest.

OK said the defendant was repeating "No problem, my friend", and pointing at the victim.

ZM was holding the knife in his right hand, OK said in his testimony. He ran to the bathrooms and threw the knife away, OK told the court.

Police arrived on scene minutes later, and questioned ZM, who led them to the murder weapon, records show.

ZM told police that the victim often assaulted him.

The court will reconvene on May 16 to allow the appointed lawyer time to study the case.

salamir@thenational.ae