x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Woman charged with beating maid to death 'is sane'

Medical tests show she is responsible for causing the death of her Indonesian maid by hitting her on the head with a frying pan, and also undressed her and forced her into sexual intercourse.

ABU DHABI // A woman accused of beating her maid to death is sane, a court heard yesterday.

NS is accused with the policeman EH of unintentionally causing the death of her Indonesian maid SS by hitting her on the head with a frying pan.

She is also accused of undressing the maid in front of her fellow workers and EH, and forcing her into sexual intercourse.

The two are facing other charges of hiding evidence and lying to authorities. They claim that SS died when she slipped and hit her head.

NS and EH, who are both Emirati, deny all charges. NS previously told the court that she suffered psychological problems and a medical test was requested.

The results of that test, presented to the Criminal Court of First Instance yesterday, showed she is sane and responsible for her acts.

Defence lawyers representing NS asked for an adjournment so they could view the report and prepare their defence.

One of the lawyers also asked for a delay to allow the Indonesian Embassy to contact the maid's blood relatives. But EH's lawyer objected to this, saying EH had been in prison since the start of the case.

The judge adjourned proceedings until April 10.

In an earlier hearing, the Ethiopian RY, who briefly worked as a maid for NS, said SS was beaten almost daily.

"She once explained to me that she beat her because SS used to touch her daughter's private parts," said RY. NS's daughter is eight years old.

On another occasion, RY said, NS forced SS to eat a bowl of salad with a drop of blood in it.

On the day of the maid's death, RY said the policeman had brought his Ethiopian maid to NS's house. RY was helping the policeman's maid to clean when they heard screaming.

"Then they called me to bring a cup of water," she said. "When I went I saw she [SS] was completely naked and they were both beating her."

The maid said she saw the policeman slapping SS, and NS slamming her into a wall.

Police claim NS confessed to beating SS with a frying pan on her head, saying she did so to discipline her, not kill her.

But NS and EH have told the court they did not beat her in any way.

The police officer who investigated the case claimed both NS and EH were present during the fatal beating, but said it was unclear which of them caused the death.

He said the maid had been fired by her previous employer for molesting a child.

NS had filed a number of complaints at various police stations claiming her daughter had been molested, but none of the complaints concerned SS.