x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Girl, 9, 'snatched near her home'

Nine-year-old girl rescued after a police officer heard her screams for help.

SHARJAH // A 32-year-old stateless man abducted a nine-year-old girl from outside her home, drove her to an abandoned building and attempted to rape her, police said yesterday.

Brigadier Abdullah Al Dukhan, the deputy director of Sharjah Police, said the incident took place at 2.45pm on Monday in the Al Qadissiya area. He added the young Moroccan girl was rescued when a police officer heard her screams.

"The victim was dropped off by her school bus near her home but was then approached by the man," said Brig Al Dukhan. "He asked her for directions to nearby schools and then instructed her to get inside his car to show him.

"Out of her naivety, she listened and found herself abducted and heading to an abandoned home in the residential area of Al Murgab," explained Brig Al Dukhan.

He tried to assault her in the abandoned house, but the girl started to scream and cry for help. A neighbour, Major Hamad Abdullah Al Rayami, from the CID, heard her cries for help and went out to see what was happening.

The man attempted to run Maj Al Rayami over with his car as he came to the girl's aid, said Brig Al Dukhan. "The Major was able to identify the car's number plates and within four hours we arrested the suspect."

The man is being detained and the case has been referred to Sharjah Public Prosecution.

Brig Al Dukhan said school bus supervisors should ensure children are met by their parents when they are dropped off or make sure they enter their homes safely.

He also urged authorities to clear the emirate of abandoned houses.

ykakande@thenational.ae