x Abu Dhabi, UAE Friday 21 July 2017

Man who killed over sister's Facebook photo 'acted in self-defence'

A brother accused of killing a man over a photo of his sister posted on Facebook claims he acted in self-defence, a Dubai court has heard.

DUBAI // A brother accused of killing a man over a photo of his sister posted on Facebook claims he acted in self-defence, a court heard today.

At the Dubai Criminal Court, KA, a 27-year-old Indian, denied the premeditated murder of a man who was harassing his younger sister by stabbing his victim more than 10 times to the abdomen, neck, chest and forehead.

Seeking the death penalty, prosecutors accused KA of plotting the murder of DN, whose age and nationality were not released, by hiding a knife under his clothes before visiting the victim's place of work.

"He confessed during investigations and said that the victim was scandalising his sister on Facebook and that, on the day of the incident, he lost his temper after the man threatened to kill his sister," said Emirati policeman AA, 24, who added that KA said he threw the murder weapon in a bin.

The incident occurred in the underground car park of Xclusive hotel apartment, in the Rafa area of Bur Dubai, on May 30.

Surveillance camera recordings showing the murder were provided by the hotel to police.

A Moroccan security guard at the hotel, 28-year-old RA, said he saw the whole crime on camera and that it all happened within seconds. "After he was taken by surprise and attacked, the victim tried to get up, walked a few steps and then fell down," said RA.

A Filipino witness identified as RP, aged 37, told prosecutors that at nearly 2.30pm on the day of the murder he went to the hotel car park to check on cleaners. "I saw the victim and the defendant talking together before I walked away towards a cleaner," he said.

He noted that about seven minutes later the two men headed to the basement level of the car park after which he heard a very loud scream. "I looked for the source of the sound and looked from the edge of the ground floor down to further check for the source," RP said. "Then I saw the defendant walking away and hiding something in his back pocket."

He added that he saw blood stains on KA's clothes. RP went down to the basement level and saw the victim lying on his back in a pool of blood. He ordered workers near him to get reception to call the police.

Investigators found that the dispute between the defendant and his victim was because of a picture of KA's sister on Facebook, however no other details about the dispute were given in records.

Police arrested the defendant after tracking him down through blood droplets that did not match that of the victim.

Libyan forensics expert FO, 59, testified that there were 28 wounds on the victim's body, 20 of which penetrated the skin, which, he said, indicated that the killer was intent on ending the life of the victim. He also said that there were wounds on the victim's hand that indicated that he tried to defend himself.

The next hearing is scheduled for October 7.

SAlamir@thenational.ae