A Saudi man sentenced to death for murdering another Saudi during a fight was saved from the gallows after the victim’s father pardoned him in response to a plea by King Abdullah, a newspaper reported on Monday.
Abdullah Nassir Al Qahtani has been in prison for nearly seven years waiting to be beheaded before he was told by his jailers the penalty has been annulled.
“When I was sent to jail, I felt it was the end…I had waited to be beheaded any day and every day was like a year for me,” he told Okaz daily.
“The Monarch’s mediation gave me a new life and I wept when I was told I was pardoned…I am very grateful for the family of the victim and I have taken a serious pledge to be obedient to God the Almighty and the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him)… I promise to be a good member of this society,” he told the paper as he prepared to leave prison in the northern town of Rafha.
Under Islamic law, which is strictly enforced in Saudi Arabia, a killer can be saved from execution and walk free if pardoned by the victim’s relatives in return for diya (blood money).
Man pays blood money after 4 years
A Saudi man who killed an Indian expatriate after knocking him over while crossing the road in Saudi Arabia and ran away felt guilty and paid bloody money four years after the accident.
The unidentified man left an envelope containing SR120,000 (Dh119,000) on the windscreen of the victim’s employer in the capital Riyadh.
The man also left a letter saying :”This money is the diya (blood money) for the victim…by this, I have done my duty and absolved myself of responsibility,” according to Kabar Arabic language daily.