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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 September 2018

Family demands death sentence for man accused of sex attack and murder of son in Abu Dhabi

Athan Janjua was killed on roof of downtown residential building

Tatiana Kruzina holds a picture of her son Athan. Behind is the father Majid Janjua. Haneen Dajani / The National
Tatiana Kruzina holds a picture of her son Athan. Behind is the father Majid Janjua. Haneen Dajani / The National

The parents of an 11-year-old boy have asked that the man suspected of sexually assaulting and killing him be given the death sentence.

Athan Janjua was found dead on the rooftop of the Abu Dhabi apartment building that he lived in in late May.

He had been sexually assaulted and strangled.

A Pakistani man, identified as MB, who the court heard is loosely related to the family, is accused of committing the crime.

As is common in court cases, the parents, a Russian mother and Pakistani father, asked for the death penalty, before the suspect was convicted.

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Parents remember 'loving, caring son'

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Athan's mother, Tatyana, asked the court to make the defendant's sister to testify under a lie detector.

"She might have known of her brother's plan, but is denying it," she claimed.

The court told her that a lie detector test is not used in the UAE.

Meanwhile, the suspect's defence lawyer, Hassan Al Riyami, requested a psychiatric committee to test the mental stability of his client and suggested the man has mental health problems.

"There is no way that a stable, sane person would commit such a crime," he told the court.

The suspect allegedly lured the boy to the rooftop, sexually assaulted him then choked him to death with a piece of laundry line.

The child was found dead the next day by maintenance workers.

Mr Al Riyami also asked the court to allow him to sit alone with his client with the presence of a translator, because the defendant cannot speak English or Arabic. The court told him this was his right and he did not need approval.

"The case file is huge and it requires some time to prepare my case," he added.

The court told the parents that it would be at least 45 days before the psychiatric report is ready and the case continues.

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