Muslim landlord breaks tenant’s leg in argument over religion
Covering the CourtsSaturday, August 20, 2016
with Tanesha Mundle
A Muslim landlord who attacked his Christian tenant with a metal pipe and broke her leg during a discussion about their religion, which had escalated into an argument, was remanded for sentencing after he was denied bail in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court last week.
Milton Lazarus, 28, of Red Hills in St Andrew also pleaded guilty to destroying the complainant’s flat-screen television and figurines.
The court also heard that Lazarus forced the complainant to give up her tenancy. But this was denied by the complainant who pleaded not guilty to breaching the Rent Restriction Act.
However, Lazarus pleaded guilty to malicious destruction of property and to aggravated assault last Wednesday when he appeared before Senior Parish Judge Judith Pusey, and a sentencing date was scheduled for September 21.
According to the police, on May 28 the complainant and Lazarus were at home have a discussion pertaining to Christianity and Islam when it turned into an argument.
During the argument, Lazarus threw a metal pipe and hit the complainant in her head and on her leg, causing the leg to break.
Lazarus also damaged a flat-screen television, valued at $45,000, and some figurines belonging to the complainant.
The matter was reported and he was arrested and charged.
Last Wednesday when the matter was mentioned, Attorney Davorna Wilson tried to get bail for Lazarus.
But the prosecutor objected on the grounds that Lazarus has been involved in a number of violent incidents in his community.
Wilson, however, persisted by asking the judge to offer him bail with conditions that would ensure that he refrains from getting in any further incident.
But the magistrate refused.
"What will I tell the complainant’s children if I grant bail to a man who is known to be violent and she turns up dead?" the judge asked.
"This is not just an intellectual exercise," Judge Pusey said, while pointing out that parish judges have to know what is happening in their parish and have to grant bail based on the circumstances.
After he was denied bail, Lazarus told the court that he had pleaded guilty from the last court date, hence he was pleaded.
He was then asked if he was willing to compensate the complainant for her damaged good and he agreed. He was subsequently told to bring $50,000 to court to pay over to the complainant on the date of his sentencing.
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