x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Uzbek denies charge of attempted murder in stabbing of roommate

A man accused of stabbing his flatmate repeatedly after a heated argument denied a charge of attempted murder.

DUBAI // A man accused of stabbing his flatmate repeatedly after a heated argument denied a charge of attempted murder. OJ, 35, from Uzbekistan, appeared in Dubai Criminal Court yesterday, accused of stabbing his friend in the back and then "jabbing" him with the knife numerous times in the stomach. Witnesses told the court that OJ had been drinking alcohol with his flatmates on the evening of August 22 last year at the home they shared in Deira's Al Weheida district.

One witness, SB, also an Uzbek, told prosecutors that the argument erupted after the victim asked the defendant to stop drinking. Another witness, MH, from Uzbekistan as well, claimed that while he had been talking with the victim outside the house, the defendant had approached and argued with him. "The victim screamed out at OJ and told him to pack his luggage and leave," MH told prosecutors. "He then walked away from him while OJ was telling him to return and resolve the issue like men."

OJ, according to the witness, pulled out a knife and stabbed the other man in the back before making repeated jabs at his stomach. SN, a 29-year-old housemate, told prosecutors that he was cooking inside the house when he was told about the stabbing. "When I came out I saw OJ trying to flee in a car, but he was not able to move it," he said. "He then stepped out screaming that he will stab everyone."

OJ pleaded not guilty plea to attempted murder. His case was adjourned until December 6. Meanwhile, a Sri Lankan accused of stabbing a man in the neck during a drunken argument was sentenced to three years in jail yesterday after being convicted of assault with a deadly weapon. Even though the victim later died of complications from his injuries, SR, 22, avoided a murder charge because he did not intend to kill him, according to the prosecution.

SR could have been sentenced to 10 years in prison on the assault conviction. Prosecutors told the Dubai Criminal Court that SR and his brother SK, 21, fought with the victim on May 23 of last year while at a shared villa in the Satwa district. Police said SR told them he took a knife from the kitchen and stabbed TS in the neck. The weapon was found near the house. SK was acquitted yesterday of aiding and abetting the crime.

amustafa@thenational.ae