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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 18 November 2018

Killer who raped and buried victim in desert given death sentence

Man died of suffocation after his mouth was stuffed with sand

An on-the-run killer who raped and murdered a man before burying his body in the Dubai desert was given the death penalty.

The 31-year-old, from Pakistan, orchestrated the murder plot with a 21-year-old accomplice, who was jailed for 10 years for his part in the crime.

The 30-year-old victim, also from Pakistan, died from suffocation after he was tied up, sexually assaulted and had his mouth stuffed with sand.

His body was found by labourers from Jebel Ali on March 16, two weeks after his disappearance. It had been partially covered by rocks, Dubai Criminal Court was told.

Police were alerted and a team of investigators and forensic experts were sent to the scene.

An investigation revealed the victim was captured on CCTV footage at a petrol station with two men shortly before his death.

Police identified the two men and were able to track down the 21-year-old. The second man left the UAE a day after he was seen with the victim and is yet to be traced.

During police questioning, the 21-year-old said his co-defendant plotted the murder.

He told prosecutors that the accused at large had raped the victim before both of them tied him up.

“The other suspect filled the victim's mouth with sand,” the 21-year-old said in court records.

He told police that his partner in crime had asked him to arrange a meeting with the man.

“He told us that the other defendant provided him with the victim’s mobile number and asked him to call the man and arrange for a meeting,” a police officer said.

The two met the victim near his residence in Jebel Ali then took him in a car belonging to their company to a remote area.

“He (the co-accused) was angry and screaming at the man accusing him of defaming him,” said the 21-year-old defendant.

“Then he told me to rape the victim but I refused. So he raped him then asked me to hand him a rope from the car,” the defendant told the court.

He told police his co-accused took the victim's mobile phone and wallet before they dug a hole, stuffed his mouth with sand and buried him.

The 21-year-old defendant denied a charge of premeditated murder, admitting he was present but saying he did not take part in the killing.

He was convicted and sentenced to 10 years in prison for murder, with an additional one year in jail for theft.

He is to be deported after serving his jail term.

His co-defendant was sentenced to death in his absence after being convicted of premeditated murder, rape and theft.