An unemployed Pakistani man with a drinking problem has been sentenced to three years and four months in jail for shoving a female stranger onto the tracks at light rail station last year.
Jamshed Qazi, 57, was sentenced yesterday at the District Court after earlier pleading guilty to one count of wounding over the shocking attack, which was described in court as the defendant’s way of “taking out his frustration” with numerous misfortunes in his life.
Qazi was caught on CCTV on the morning of October 21 last year approaching Liang Youdi, a 59-year-old cleaner from the mainland who was waiting at the Yuen Long light rail station, and pushing her onto the tracks.
Liang suffered a broken arm and wounded her chin as a result of the incident, Ming Pao reports.
In a mitigating statement, the court heard that Qazi has a masters degree in political science from a university in Pakistan, and he moved to Hong Kong to work as a law clerk.
Defense lawyers said that Qazi, who was a cadet with the Pakistan Army, sustained a back injury during his military training, and that the had to leave his job in 2004 when the back pain became unbearable.
Qazi started receiving disability allowances, but his back injury made it difficult for him to find work, and — according to Apple Daily — was at this point that Qazi started drinking.
The defendant’s drinking problem was further exacerbated by the deaths of his brother and sister, who were murdered in his home town in Pakistan, lawyers said.
Apple Daily reports that since 2008, Qazi had a number of previous convictions that included criminal damage and theft.
Before the Yuen Long incident, lawyers said Qazi’s wife left him — and took their 10-year-old son with her — after she suspected him of drinking again shortly after he was discharged from hospital. He ended up sleeping rough on the streets.
Lawyers said that in the run-up to the incident, Qazi was frustrated and depressed, and that he had two to three cans of beer before the incident, and took out his frustration on Liang.
They also revealed that Qazi did want to return to his hometown but was unable due to financial difficulties.
Although Judge David Dufton expressed sympathy for the defendant, he said that alcoholism and depression is not an excuse for what he did.
Dufton added that although Liang’s fractured left elbow had recovered, the incident has left her unable to perform simple household chores like wringing towels and lifting a teapot.
The judge added that Liang — who came to Hong Kong to support herself financially –has had to return to the mainland where she is dependent on her sister, and feels useless and guilty.
Citing a medical report on Liang, Dufton added the victim suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, is scared of walking past strangers, and is also too scared to go near Yuen Long, HK01 reports.
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