Riyadh: Three men have confessed in a court in Saudi Arabia that they buried alive five Asian workers, believed to be Indians, on a farm four years ago, a media report said.
The bodies of the victims were discovered by a farmer, Ali Habib, who had rented a 20,000-square-metre farm two years ago from its elderly woman owner, earlier this month while clearing the land in Safwa area of Qatif in Saudi Arabia's Eastern Province. The crime happened in 2010.
Police arrested 25 people, including expatriates and Saudi citizens, in connection with the case, the Arab News reported Thursday.
Three of the suspects confessed to their crime in court Wednesday.
A man, whose identity was not disclosed in the report, said that four years ago, he was driving around with a friend after consuming drugs and alcohol when he received a call from another friend at around 10 p.m. who asked to see him immediately at a farm.
"We saw five workers with their hands tied in the seating area. When the friend with me asked why they were tied, our host said that one of them had sexually harassed his sponsor's daughter and other women," he was quoted as telling the court.
"I saw that the five Indian workers were tied and unconscious, just before we went to another room to drink alcohol and smoke hashish. While we were drinking, I heard one of them screaming so I went out and slapped him in the face," the man said.
"Later the friend who came with me left the room with a stick and hit the worker until he bled. We then took them all into another room," he added.
"The three of us continued beating the workers on different parts of their bodies while continuing to drink and smoke," the man recalled.
According to him, the host suggested that "we bury them alive in a hole behind the entrance gate of the farm".
"We tied them again with ropes and adhesive tape so they could not move," he said.
He said that then their host loaded the workers onto a pickup truck and dumped them into a 2.5-metre-deep hole.
"We buried them alive with all their identity cards. At the time for the dawn prayer my friend and I left the farm, while our host remained there alone."
Habib discovered the human remains while clearing the place to start farming.
The woman had rented the land to another person before Habib.
He said that before he took the charge of the farm, the land was deserted and contained a lot of waste.
The decomposed bodies were found with ropes around their arms and legs and their mouths filled with cotton.
The bodies were covered with duct tape.
Police have found an engraved gold ring and residence cards that helped them to identify some of the victims and suspects.
When Habib was digging the area he found carcasses. Initially, he thought the remains were those of a dead animal, but his doubts disappeared after he discovered undergarments next to a body.