The suspect's criminal record dates back to 1996 linking him to crimes such as forced sex with males, rape and theft. Image Credit: GN Archive

Dubai: A court has referred a man charged with premeditated murder associated with the rape of a four-year-old boy to Rashid Hospital to undergo psychiatric evaluation.

At a hearing on Sunday, the defence lawyer asked the court if the suspect could be referred for psychiatric tests because he seems to suffer from 'paranoia'.

The court had reconvened to hear the defence. R.R., an Emirati was charged with the intentional killing associated with the rape of four-year-old M.M., a Pakistani. Advocate Mohammad Al Sa'adi had earlier volunteered to defend R.R.

"His mother died soon after he was born. His father brought him from Bahrain to the UAE and soon married an Indian woman. He had three children with her. His stepmother tortured him. She destroyed his life. The father and stepmother would beat him. It is because of this torture that he bears a grudge towards his step brothers because he felt discriminated against. The accused seems to suffer from paranoia. I ask the court, if it deems fit, to refer him for tests," Al Sa'adi argued.

The court has decided to refer the suspect to Rashid Hospital where he will be examined by psychological experts to assess his mental health.

There was heavy security and people were checked before they were allowed to enter the courtroom.

More than 25 police officers escorted the accused to the court. The 30-year-old R.R. was standing in white dress at the dock surrounded by more than 10 police officers and security.

He stood with his head down during the court session. He did not talk or respond when the judge asked him if he wanted to say anything.

The suspect, Al Sa'adi said, is illiterate. "He did not go to school. No one taught him the good and the right. He was ill-treated by his step mother and by his father. Both used to beat him severely, even for trivial issues," Al Sa'adi told the court.

Al Sa'adi said: "No one even taught him about his religion," he said.

"His father died when he was 14. He joined the army at age 14 and was suspended when he was 17 because he never attended work," Al Sa'adi said. The suspect then took up fishing and earned about Dh2,000 for each trip. He spent all his money on alcohol, drugs and nightclubs. He used to keep bad company.

Al Sa'adi said R.R. grew up alone. "The suspect has committed several crimes in the past, but was caught easily. Once, he set a detention centre on fire," the lawyer told the court.

The policeman, who arrested him this time, said the suspect was smiling and was nonchalant, Al Sa'adi said. "The fact that the crime occurred in a mosque shows that the person who committed the crime is not normal."

Al Sa'adi urged the court not to be distracted by public opinion as justice is what is most important.

"I was told by the family of the victim that I should not take the case," the lawyer said.

Al Sa'adi said that it is justice what makes him take up the case.

"The suspect could be mentally ill because of his miserable childhood," he said.

The father of the victim and his uncles were present at the court. The next hearing will be held on Sunday, January 10.