Life sentence upheld for man who murdered wife

Man tells court his spouse had accused him of having affair and she stabbed herself to death while she was drunk

DUBAI // A killer had his life jail term upheld by the Dubai Court of Appeal for murdering his wife then claiming she stabbed herself while drunk.

Pakistani L R, 40, denied premeditated murder at both the Criminal and Appeal Courts.

“She was drunk and stabbed herself, so I got scared and put her body in a plastic bag and drove to Ras Al Khaimah where I dumped the bag,” he told the Criminal Court judges last April.

The body of Najma Banon, who was in her thirties, was discovered by Ras Al Khaimah police in 2010 and an investigation led to arrest of the killer in Dubai. Records do not show why it took the case four years to reach to court.

Prosecutors said that on January 28 of 2010 the husband went to his neighbours and asked them to take care of his young daughter because he and his wife had to go to Pakistan so he could renew his wife’s passport.

“My wife agreed on sheltering the girl because we are neighbours.

“We knew they were married but we had never seen a contract or something to prove that marriage and all we knew about them was that both were alcoholics,” testified M A, the killer’s neighbour and countryman.

“When he handed the girl to my wife, he was crying so hard and then confessed that his crying was because his wife was not travelling with him but in fact had fled the house,” testified M A.

He added that the husband said he would leave the girl with them for 10 days, but she stayed for 23 days.

“He would call me often to check on the girl and told me that if his wife, or her sister came, I can give them the girl, but neither ever came,” he said.

Another neighbour testified that the deceased had once called her mother and complained that her husband had assaulted her. “But I have no information regarding the killing,” said T R, a Pakistani worker.

The killer’s brother, A R, said that the L R surprised them when he returned to Pakistan.

“He confessed to me and to the entire family and to his other wife in Pakistan that he killed his first wife in Dubai,” A R said, adding that his brother said he had a fight with her while they were drunk and then he killed her.

“He did not say what the fight was about, but he told me that he was in a relationship with her before the marriage and that he married her on a piece of paper when she got pregnant.

“But then they had several fights together during which the two assaulted each other,” testified A R.

During prosecution investigations the killer claimed that the fight with the woman was over her suspicion that he had been unfaithful.

“I told her I didn’t have any affairs but she didn’t believe me and grabbed a knife threatening to stab our daughter if I did not confess, so I pushed her and she stabbed herself. She was drunk then,” he told prosecutors.

He added that he got scared and left her bleeding for about 20 minutes before she died.

He then went to a nearby supermarket and purchased a rubbish bag, hid her body inside it then drove to Ras Al Khaimah and dumped it.

L R will be deported after competing his jail term.

It was not clear in records what happened to the daughter after the murder was discovered.

If there are no relatives in Dubai a child would normally be placed at the Dubai Foundation for Women and Children and then sent to Pakistan under the care of the closest family member.

salamir@thenational.ae

Published: December 14, 2014 04:00 AM

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