Qatar jails U.S. couple over daughter's death
Matthew and Grace Huang denied the charges (File/AFP)
A Primary Criminal Court on Thursday sentenced the Doha-based American couple, accused of starving their adopted daughter to death, to three years in jail and fined them QR15000 each.
The verdict was passed following a trial of the couple. According to the verdict, the couple must also leave Qatar after serving the prison term.
The Public Prosecution accused the parents of human trafficking, torturing their 8-year-old daughter and starving her to death. However, the lawyer of the defendants told newsmen that he would appeal against the verdict of the court on behalf of his clients within the next fortnight.
The lawyer argued that according to the forensic report, the victim had consumed food and drink two days before her death and there was no evidence against his clients to prove that they had killed the victim.
According to a story of a source close to the parents, the daughter allegedly refused repeatedly to abide by the diet regime imposed by her mother upon her. And after the mother noticed that the girl ate biscuits from the fridge in violation of her prescribed diet regime, she decided with her husband to force her to comply with it.
"They locked the door on her at night to force her to eat with them during the day. But she refused voluntarily to eat at all which led to her death", said the source.
The daughter who had lost her African parents was among three sons adopted by the American couple.
It is worth mentioning that the parents had earlier told the doctors in the hospital that their daughter had not eaten for the last four days whereas they had told the police that as parents they had the right to punish their daughter when she did not abide by their instructions.
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