x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Maid who stabbed and burned children confesses in Dubai court

The 25-year-old Ethiopian admitted to attempting to kill three Emirati children in her care, and later trying to kill herself.

DUBAI // A maid accused of stabbing and burning her sponsor’s three children appeared in court on Sunday, and confessed to all charges.

Y B, a 25-year-old Ethiopian, sobbed during her first appearance at Dubai Criminal Court last week and was unable to enter a plea. She said only that she wanted to return home.

On Sunday, she confessed to attempting to kill the three Emirati children in her care, and admitted that she attempted to kill herself afterwards.

She also admitted to stealing Dh640 and damaging her sponsor’s property.

“The four of them, the mother and the children, threatened to kill me,” Y B told the court through a translator provided by the Ethiopian embassy.

“When I later asked them to let me go home, they refused and again threatened to kill me,” she testified.

Prosecutors said that the maid admitted the crimes were an act of revenge for being mistreated and deprived of food.

According to records, she said she planned the crime because her sponsor, a 42-year-old teacher, often accused her of theft and refused to allow her to travel home, claiming the maid’s passport was missing.

On the morning of April 11, while the mother was out of the country, Y B poured boiling water on the children, aged 10, 14 and 15, while they slept. She then stabbed them repeatedly with a meat cleaver and a knife.

The children, bleeding heavily from the face and neck and badly burnt, ran to the living room, where A A, the 15-year-old girl, tried to call police from the landline but found the cable had been cut.

The children locked themselves in a bathroom and used a mobile phone to call police, prosecutors said.

“We were terrified that she would be able to get us and end our lives,” A A said.

The maid is then said to have gone to the mother’s room to take the money and her passport, which was hidden in a drawer.

Police went to Al Warqa 2 after receiving the report of the incident, and had to break down the door to the flat.

A M A, 21, said the children were frightened, but opened the bathroom door when they realised the police were there.

“They were bleeding from everywhere and badly burned,” he said.

The children were taken to Rashid Hospital and police said they found the maid sitting on the floor of the flat’s balcony, covered with blood and holding the weapons.

She reportedly tried to slit her own throat before surrendering to police when they raised their guns.

A lawyer assigned by the court to defend the maid requested that some of the witnesses be summoned for cross-examining.

The next hearing is on June 18.

salamir@thenational.ae