Killer drifting driver to be beheaded

Last updated 07:32 27/06/2012

Relevant offers

World news

Pope denounces use of religion to justify violence Afghan rivals sign unity deal Scare prompts White House security review Syrian Kurds flee Islamic State into Turkey Trouble on Glasgow streets after referendum While you were sleeping Pope heads for Albania Iran seeks give and take Putin to face icy G20 reception Paris tries to save Pont des Arts from 'love locks'

A Saudi court sentenced a middle-aged joy-rider to death by beheading for accidentally killing two people while performing a car stunt near the capital Riyadh, the Saudi newspaper Al Watan has reported.

A pastime known as "drifting," in which drivers make their cars spin and skid at high speed, is popular among Saudi men with few options for entertainment in a conservative kingdom where cinemas do not exist and mixing between unrelated men and women is forbidden.

Al Watan reported that the defendant, which it said identified himself as "Mutannish" - "he who ignores" in Arabic, struck and killed two men while performing the thrill-seeking stunt and fled the scene before being arrested.

"The court of Onaiza handed down a sentence to kill the drifter 'mutannish' by beheading as punishment for his heinous deed and to deter others who tamper with the nation's security," the report stated.

Al Watan did not say when the sentence would be carried out. A Justice Ministry spokesman could not be reached for comment.

Saudi authorities have treated deaths resulting from acts of "drifting" as criminally negligent homicides.

In 2005, a Saudi naval officer found guilty of killing three minors in a stunt-driving accident was handed a death sentence that was subsequently reduced to 3000 lashes and 20 years in prison, according to local media.

Saudi Arabia, which follows a strict version of Sunni Islam, does not have a written penal code and judges issue verdicts according to their own interpretation of the Koran.

Amnesty International has said that at least 82 people were executed in Saudi Arabia last year, many of them by public beheading.

Ad Feedback

- Reuters

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content