MANILA, Philippines — Two inmates of a detention center in the United Arab Emirates are on trial for the death of their asthmatic Filipino fellow inmate last February, an online news site has reported.
The Khaleej Times said the two who stood trial included a 19-year-old Yemeni and a 20-year-old "stateless" man.
Both men, as well as the Filipino, were inmates of Rashidiya Detention Center. The two were also accused of assaulting the Filipino victim’s companion.
On the other hand, the Court of First Instance referred an accomplice of the two to the Juveniles Court.
The victim’s companion, also a Filipino, testified that he and the victim were allowed out of the detention center to buy grocery items.
“We were trying to deliver ordered stuff to some inmates when the defendants accosted us. They wanted to take the things for free. We told them that it was ordered by other fellow mates," he said.
After the two distributed the items, the Filipino said the three blocked their way again. “They pushed me and never said what the reason was. They then beat me," he said.
During the commotion, he said he saw his companion putting his hand on his chest and breathing hard.
“He was asking for his inhaler which he used when he suffered asthma attacks. Then a police officer came and took my friend out. I knew later that he passed away. Inmates told me that he was also beaten," he said.
One of the suspects alleged that the victim’s companion showed him his middle finger, which he said angered him.
“I saw the trio beating the two Filipinos in the cell. I took them out and one of them who could not breathe properly died shortly afterward," a police guard said.
The Egyptian physician, who examined the victim, stated that he did not notice any mark of physical assault on his body.
“The nurse at the jail clinic told me that the victim had a medical record. He used to have breathing problems," the physician said.
He added he came to know from witnesses’ statements that the victim was part of the fight even though he was not directly involved in it.
“He was not beaten but he fell down and could not breathe," he said.
A medical report said the high stress and enormous muscle effort led to irregular heartbeat, which resulted in other repercussions leading to the Filipino’s death. - GMANews.TV