Thursday, February 19, 2009

Diplomat Accused of Beating Wife "Like a Dog"

A diplomat from Afghanistan has been charged with felony assault after police said he subjected his wife to an all-day beating inside their home last week.

Mohammed Fagirad, 30, of Flushing was charged last Friday with second-degree assault and fourth-degree grand larceny after allegedly beating his 22-year-old wife over a 15-hour period on February 11. Fagirad, who is assigned as a vice consul at the Afghanistan Consulate, faces up to seven years in prison if convicted on the charges.

Authorities say that Fagirad terrorized his wife inside their apartment at 144-34 26th Avenue beginning when he grabbed his wife by the neck and held her against a wall with one hand at about 8 a.m. last Wednesday morning. When he let her go, she fell to the floor where he held her arm and repeatedly slapped her about the face and head, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.

Fagirad then told his wife that she was a “dog” and that he was “going to treat her like a dog,” according to prosecutors. He allegedly struck her about the back with a belt at least three times as she lay on the floor. He then pushed her down a flight of stairs consisting of about thirteen steps before leaving the apartment. Once Fagirad left the residence, his wife went to the 109th Precinct stationhouse to file a report before returning home.

After Fagirad returned a short time later, he took his wife’s cell phone from her jacket pocket and used it to call police to file a counterclaim. He then picked up his wife, slammed her into the floor and sat on her chest for about three to four minutes while grabbing her around the neck.

According to a spokesman for the district attorney, Fagirad was charged with grand larceny as a result of physically taking possession of his wife’s cell phone from her. When police arrived at the apartment after he called to file a counterclaim, they realized that his wife had filed a complaint at the stationhouse earlier that day.

As result of the attacks, Fagirad’s wife suffered bruising to her neck and right eye and scratches and bruising to her left hand, according to authorities. She was taken to a local hospital where she was treated for injuries to her back, ribs and neck.

“The defendant is accused of repeatedly and savagely beating his wife over a prolonged period – at one point, even leaving their residence only to return and inflict more harm on her,” said Brown in a statement. “Such conduct has no place in a civilized society.”

The district attorney’s office said that Fagirad only receives immunity for acts that are part of his official duties – for example, he cannot be forced to testify on court about the actions of the people he works with.

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