Photo has been used for illustrative purposes.
Hamza M Sengendo, Staff Reporter
A construction site labourer who tried to kidnap a 4-year-old boy has seen his six-month prison term doubled by the Dubai Appeals Court.
The Asian defendant, 32, snatched the Arab boy from a Dubai street at around 6pm on Feb.21. He pressed the boy’s face against his chest to stop him from resisting and suppress his screams for help, records showed.
He dashed with him inside an alley. The boy’s aunt ran after him and forced him to place the boy down. He denied the attempted kidnap during court questioning. Prosecutors demanded a tough punishment.
The Dubai Criminal Court sentenced him to six months behind bars to be followed deportation. Prosecutors maintained their demand. The Dubai Appeals Court modified the prison term to a one-year jail term.
In prosecution records, the Tunisian aunt narrated that she was with the boy and his 3-year-old sister at the playground of a residential complex in Al Barsha when the boy rode his bike to the end of the playground.
“He rode through pathways near a building under construction. I followed him to bring him back. The defendant showed up from the building, grabbed him, pressed his face against his chest and ran away with him. “I shouted at him. He did not stop. He fled until inside a nearby alley. I chased him while shouting. A watchman followed pursuit. We were about to reach him when he placed the boy down. The boy was very scared.
“The watchman seized him. I asked him why he had run away with the boy. He claimed the latter poured water at the construction site.” The defendant freed himself from their grip and fled before police could arrive.
The aunt who had photographed the defendant with her mobile phone provided police with his photo. A Yemeni policeman revealed he apprehended him in the neighbourhood. He was under the influence of alcohol. During interrogations, he denied having tried to kidnap the boy. He claimed the boy poured a bucket of water at his workplace. And that he only shouted at him and chased him away. The aunt refuted the claim.
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A trespasser insulted police officers and bragged about being an American, the Dubai Criminal Court heard on Monday.
Officials earlier said three persons had died in the mishap, while four others were shifted to a hospital. With four more casualties, the death toll had increased to seven the victims included two women.
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