Torture dad and girlfriend claim mental illness

The Emirati father and his pregnant girlfriend who are accused of torturing his daughters, killing one, say they weren't mentally stable at the time of the crime.

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DUBAI // The Emirati father and his pregnant girlfriend who are accused of torturing and killing his 8-year-old daughter told the Dubai Criminal Court today that they were not mentally stable at the time of the crime.

"I was receiving treatment at Al Khaleej Medical Centre and the documents can be found there and at the anti-narcotics department as well," said HS, the 29-year-old father.

The pair are charged with imprisoning and torturing the man's daughters Wadeema, 8, and Mira, 7. They are also charged with hiding the body of Wadeema, burying her without obtaining the proper burial permits and torturing Mira, causing her a 10 per cent permanent disability.

HS has denied all charges except hiding the body of his daughter. The girlfriend, AM, confessed to all charges before the presiding judge, Maher Salemeh.

The couple, who lived together in a studio apartment in International City, are accused of burning the girls with irons and cigarettes. They allegedly poured boiling water on the girls, and beat them with sticks, electrical wires and bars.

Prosecutors said the two also used a Taser gun on the girls.

After Wadeema was beaten to death, the father wrapped her in a cloth and buried her in the Sharjah desert.

"I beat [the children] and burned them, he did not do anything," AM said. "I lost realisation and I didn't control my behaviours. I only realised what I did was wrong after I did it," she told the judge, adding that she suffered from schizophrenia.

"Don't analyse as you please," the judge told her.

Wadeema's mother was present in the courtroom, and shouted at the couple as she left.

"They are liars!"

Hamady Al Shiwi, AM's lawyer, said he needed more time to read the case files, which he received yesterday.

The judge ordered that the two defendants be referred to Rashid Hospital for psychological evaluation by a three-member committee. He also ordered that the committee determine whether the defendants were aware of their actions at the time of the incident.

The next hearing will be on July 25 to hear witness testimony.