crime

In first hearing, suspect denies raping and killing boy

Suspect denies charges and claims he was coerced into confession

by Anwar AhmadStaff Reporter
16:40 August 8, 2017

Abu Dhabi: A Pakistani suspect in the case of the brutal rape and murder of an 11-year-old boy denied all charges in an Abu Dhabi court on Tuesday.

As the trial in the case of Azan’s murder began, the suspect, M.A, told the Abu Dhabi Criminal Court of First Instance: “I have been beaten and pressured by the police and public prosecution to accept these charges. But I didn’t commit any crime of sodomising, using a rope to strangulate the child and killing him.”

According to the Abu Dhabi Police, the body of Azan Majid Janjua was found on the roof of his residential building in June and that he was raped and murdered.

The presiding judge questioned the accused regarding his confession to raping the child and strangling him with a rope. The accused replied, “I was pressured to sign documents and confess to the crime. But I didn’t do this. Even the CID officers roughed me up too much.”

The accused also told the court: “How can I sign documents when I am illiterate? I don’t know how to read and write.”

The court asked the man, “If you claim that the CID officers roughed you up, then there will be marks of assault on your body ...” and where were these marks?

The accused replied, “No”, and did not elaborate.

He told the court, “If the prosecution claims that I had strangled the child using a rope, there must be a rope and my fingerprints should be on that. They should be examined in forensic labs.”

The court ordered the prosecution to produce evidence in the next hearing.

“If the prosecution claims that I am guilty, then I need evidence that proves my guilt,” he said. The judge told the man that his confession to the public prosecution was recorded.

The boy’s Russian mother, stepmother, father and grandfather were present in the court yesterday.

The Public Prosecution is seeking the death penalty. The prosecution had earlier described it as the “most heinous crime by a relative”.

The charges framed by the prosecution also include using the disguise of woman’s clothing and breaking the traffic rules.

During the first hearing, the court issued orders to provide a defence lawyer for the accused.

The court also issued orders to produce witnesses and evidence in the presence of a defence lawyer during the next hearing which is scheduled for August 23.

The court verified identities of all relatives of the victim including the boy’s father, mother, stepmother and grandfather and asked the parents to produce an inheritance certificate that proves their relation with the child.

The Pakistani accused, in his late 20s, was working as a driver. His sister is the second wife of the boy’s father.

The boy’s father is a Pakistani and mother a Russian.

Speaking to Gulf News outside the courtroom, Azan’s father, Dr Majid Janjua, said, “I have already demanded through the public prosecution that the accused be executed publicly [so that] it sends a message to such criminals.

“I don’t want compensation, I want to see this man executed for such a heinous crime,” he said.