x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 21 January 2018

Tamim murder trial 'unlikely in UAE'

Dubai Police say its unlikely that Egypt would extradite the tycoon, instead choosing to try him in his home country.

Hisham Talaat Moustafa is a member of Egypt's upper house of parliament.
Hisham Talaat Moustafa is a member of Egypt's upper house of parliament.

DUBAI // An Egyptian tycoon and a suspected killer for hire charged in connection with the murder of the Lebanese singer Suzan Tamim are unlikely to ever stand trial in the UAE, a Dubai Criminal Investigation Department source said yesterday. Although Dubai Police could request the pair be extradited, the suspects are expected to be tried in their home country, said the source, who is close to the case but requested that he not be named.

"It would be standard procedure to ask for them to be extradited," the source said. "However, I don't believe that the Egyptian authorities will hand them over since they are both Egyptian nationals." On Tuesday, Hisham Talaat Moustafa, the former chairman of the board of Egypt's largest publicly traded property company, the Talaat Moustafa Group, and a member of the country's upper house of parliament, was charged with contracting Tamim's killing. The man he allegedly hired to carry out the murder, Mohsen el Sokari, a former police officer who worked for the tycoon, has also been charged in the case.

The chief of Dubai Police, Lt Gen Dahi Khalfan, has been considering his options in the case, according to a senior police official, and is expected to reveal what, if any, request will be made to Egyptian authorities at a press conference scheduled for today at noon. The body of the 31-year-old singer was discovered by her cousin in the corridor of her Dubai flat with her throat slit on July 28. Police said that they had identified the suspected killer later that day.

Sokari, 39, was apprehended by Egyptian authorities three days later relaxing by the pool at a five-star hotel in Cairo. He allegedly confessed to the murder, telling police that Moustafa - who was reportedly romantically involved with Tamim - hired him to kill the singer for US$2 million (Dh7.35m). @Email:rabubaker@thenational.ae