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Death sentence upheld for murderer
June 26, 2014, 8:48 am
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Jaber with his mother - Social media

Killer stabbed victim at Kuwait shopping mall following altercation

Kuwait’s Court of Appeals has upheld the death sentence for a defendant who killed a Lebanese national in an assault at a shopping centre.

The court however commuted the death sentences for the three other suspects into life in prison.

The four defendants were last year sentenced to death for killing Jaber Yousuf, a dentist born to a Kuwaiti mother and a Lebanese father, in December 2002 at the Avenues, Kuwait’s largest shopping mall, following an altercation in the parking lot.

Reports said that Jaber, his brother, a cousin and a friend had a verbal argument over traffic priorities with four people riding in another car.

However, while the argument was over for Jaber and his companions when they entered the mall and went to a coffee shop, it was not for the other four young men - two Iraqi brothers, a Saudi national and a Bidoon (stateless) who reportedly wanted the fight to continue until the score was settled to their favour. The main suspect bought a knife from a shop at the mall, walked up to the four friends and resumed the dispute.

The stateless youth, 22, reportedly pulled out the knife he had hidden under his clothes and stabbed the dentist to death. The attackers wounded two other people before fleeing. A massive manhunt was launched by the police who used the footage of the two cars arriving at the shopping complex to eventually track the stateless man and arrest him in his hideout in a desert area.

Reports in Kuwait City said that he confessed to the crime and gave out the names of his friends. The Saudi national was arrested later. The hunt for the two Iraqi accomplices took five days with security officers monitoring all areas where they could possibly hide, Kuwaiti media reported. The brothers eventually realised that they could not go on hiding forever and surrendered, the reports said.

The main suspect said that he threw the knife in a garbage bin after fleeing the mall to hide initially in his home. He then moved to a camp owned by friend.

He added that he acted in self-defence and that he never thought the stabbing would result in the death of the victim. He said that when he heard from a friend that the victim had died, he thought about crossing the Kuwait-Saudi borders illegally to flee the country. The dentist’s murder in one of the most open and public places in Kuwait City sent shock waves through the community and triggered a wave of sympathy with the family and a string of condemnation from lawmakers and former political figures.

 

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