By Dina Aboul Hosn, Staff Reporter www.gulfnews.com
Dubai A taxi driver, accused of beating a passenger to death, appeared in the Dubai Court of First Instance to hear his charges and defend himself.
Prosecutors said the accused, M.N,, a 44-year old Pakistani, beat his Asian passenger H.A. with his hands. A forensic doctor testified that the assault’s intensity caused the victim to go into cardiac arrest and die.
The defendant’s lawyer told the court a different story; “The victim was already a heart patient, and when he took the taxi from his hotel he was angry and not in a normal condition,” the lawyer told Presiding Judge Fahmi Mounir.
M.N. kept asking him for directions, but the passenger told him to just keep driving. This made the driver call an ambulance because he suspected something was wrong with the passenger, who was shaking.
When the ambulance arrived, paramedics found there was nothing wrong with the passenger, police questioned both the driver and passenger for calling an ambulance for no reason, the lawyer told the court.
This made H.A very angry, so he started beating the driver, while he was driving causing him to bleed. The lawyer said that the taxi driver was merely defending himself by pushing off the passenger’s hands.
Apparently, the victim’s heart could not take all the pressure and he went into cardiac arrest and died, the lawyer added.
“My client did the right thing, your honour. It could have been the other way round had the passenger not died. He would have been the defendant, while my client would have been the victim because he was defending himself. The forensic report shows that H.A. had no cuts on his body, but merely abrasions on his hands from the driver’s attempts to keep him away while he was driving,” the lawyer said.
During an earlier session, a policeman testified: “The driver alleged that when he insisted H.A. must specify his direction, the latter cursed at him…so he [M.N.] called the police. H.A. beat him until he bled. M.N. claimed that he pulled over and ordered H.A. to leave the taxi and wait for the police to come.”
A paramedic who treated H.A. said: “He [H.A.] alleged to me that someone beat him while he was in the taxi…Ten minutes later, police summoned me again to check on H.A., whom I found dead in a police car’s back seat.”
The case was adjourned until September 26.