DUBAI // A Kenyan cook has lost his appeal seeking a reduced sentence for the premeditated murder of his colleague.
The 30-year-old cook was sentenced to 10 years in jail by Dubai Criminal Court for killing his colleague by repeatedly pushing his head underwater in the Arabian Gulf until the man died. He was additionally convicted of drinking alcohol without a licence and was fined Dh1,000 as he was drunk at the time.
The cook was at a Jumeirah open beach on January 22 last year with two others, aged 25 and 30, all of whom are from Kenya and worked at the same restaurant.
A medical report ruled that the victim had high levels of alcohol in his system and there were no signs of assault, therefore it looked like it would be a simple case of drowning.
But an eyewitness, another cook and the owner of the restaurant where they all worked started asking questions about the death.
Investigations showed that the defendant and the deceased went for a swim and, shortly after, the cook came back alone.
“When the others asked him about the victim, he said he didn’t know and took his belongings then left,” said a 28-year-old Emirati policeman.
Drowning was stated as the cause of death and the medical report said that he may have lost control while at sea.
However, one of the two other men who were present confided in the other cook that he saw the killer repeatedly pushing the other man’s head under water.
“So after the man told me about what he saw, I told the restaurant owner that this was a murder,” said the other Kenyan cook, 26.
The 54-year-old Italian restaurant owner told police and an investigation was launched.
“I told him [the 26-year-old cook] to make sure so he started asking around and he was told that the victim was not alone at sea and that he was drowned deliberately by one of his friends, so we headed to the police station and reported the matter,” the restaurant owner said.
The defendant denied killing his compatriot, saying that he was playing with him when he pushed his head under water but that he did not kill him.
The two others present at the beach were found guilty of aiding and abetting for being aware of the crime and failing to alert authorities.
The killer will be deported after serving his prison sentence.