DUBAI // A student stole a gazelle from a farm to raise money for his ex-wife's alimony, but the animal died because he failed to care for it, a court heard today.
MH, 29, an Emirati, broke into a farm in Al Rawiya at about 2am on December 24 last year before herding the gazelle - worth Dh3,500 - and some sheep into his Nissan Patrol. Doing so took him more than an hour because he is unable to use his left arm.
He then tethered the gazelle to a tree before going to the Sharjah Livestock Market where he tried to sell the sheep. While he was at the market the animal died after fracturing its neck trying to break free.
Police investigating the burglary went to the market and met the shop worker JA, who said a pair of brothers had offered to sell him a gazelle and some sheep.
"They came to me and tried to sell me four sheep and a gazelle but I told them I couldn't buy them until the owner of the shop came back, so I took their numbers and names to contact them then," recalled the shop worker, who led police to the brothers.
The elder brother, MH, was charged with theft, damaging the farm's fence and causing the death of the animal. He admitted the charges, saying he needed the money to pay his ex-wife's alimony. However, he said his brother was unaware the animals were stolen.
The Misdemeanours Court sentenced him to six months in prison. The younger brother, AH, 23, and a Bangladeshi JA, 32, were charged with possession of a stolen animal. Each were fined Dh2,000.