13 January 2021 :
A Moroccan Court sentenced on 13 January 2021 a 24-year old man to death penalty for kidnapping, raping, and killing Adnane Bouchouf, a 11-year old boy in September last year.
Tangier’s court also sentenced the perpetrator’s flatmates. The three flatmates received four months prison sentences each for failing to report the crime.
Security services found Adnane’s body on 11 September buried in a garden not far from where the family of the victim lived.
The 24-year old defendant kidnapped the boy, raped, and killed him in cold blood on 7 September, the day when Adnane disappeared.
The family’s victim had searched for their boy in vain, disturbing flyers and posting Adnane photos.
Moroccan citizens reacted to the incident quickly, sharing the photos of Adnane all over social networks.
When the defendant noticed people’s alert, he rushed to the barber in an attempt to change his look.
A street camera footage showed a young man talking to Adnane before walking away with him.
Security services were able to identify and find the suspect appearing in the video, after he had already committed the crime.
During his hearings, the perpetrator claimed he did not rape Adnane Bouchouf.
He also claimed that he was not planning to kill him and said he only kidnapped him to ask for a ransom since he was in need of money.
The news about the death of Adnane shocked Moroccans across the country and abroad.
Many asked for the maximum sentence against the suspect, signing a petition on Facebook urging for execution or death sentence.
The imam at the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca, sheikh Omar Al Kazabr, defended Moroccans advocating for the death penalty as punishment for the kidnapping, rape, and murder.
A number of activists adopted a firm position against death penalty, however. They argued that every living person has the right to live, regardless of their crime.
The North African country had 74 prisoners on death row at the end of 2020 but has not carried out an execution since 1993.
Over the past two decades, Morocco has moved to reduce the number of prisoners on death row, by commuting their sentences to life imprisonment or fixed jail terms.
A total of 119 prisoners were removed from death row in this way between 2000 and 2019.