New footage shows a distraught mother carry her ‘motionless’ child into a five-star hotel lobby after the baby’s British father ‘beat the girl to death’.
One-year-old Sophia Barakat – ‘always smiling’ according to a court witness who saw her before the tragedy – was ‘blue’ and ‘not breathing’.
Madina Barakat, 23, pleaded with staff at the InterContinental Hotel in Almaty, Kazakhstan, for assistance, briefly laying her daughter on the reception counter in CCTV footage revealed as part of her British husband’s murder trial.
The Kazakh mother sank to the floor and had to be helped up by a hotel security man who called an ambulance.
Shocking newly-revealed CCTV footage shows Madina Barakat, 23, carrying her ‘blue’ and ‘not breathing’ daughter Sophia, one, through the InterContinental Hotel lobby in Almaty, Kazakhstan
Hotel staff gave evidence that at the time Madina (left) blamed her husband, Airbus 330 captain Mohamed Barakat (right), 41, shouting: ‘He killed my child, he hit her’
Madina then carried the child to a sofa in the lobby, but collapsed on the floor.
Hotel staff gave evidence that at the time she blamed her husband, Airbus 330 captain Mohamed Barakat, 41, shouting: ‘He killed my child, he hit her.’
In a startling new development, the pilot, who pleads not guilty, told the trial that he had a long history of suffering from epilepsy, and that Sophia died in an ‘accident’ in the hotel room when he suffered a ‘seizure’.
He indicated this condition was known to doctors in Hong Kong and Malaysia involved in his medical checks as a pilot, even though epilepsy is often a reason for not granting a flying permit.
His employer, a subsidiary of Hong Kong Airlines, has not responded to a request for comment.
Madina turns round and pleads with hotel staff for help after laying her daughter down on a sofa in the lobby
Madina lays the girl on the reception counter as a security guard approaches. She rescinded an earlier statement and strongly denied she now blamed Barakat for killing their daughter
He previously worked as a pilot for low cost Malaysian airline AirAsia.
Barakat also alleged that a senior police investigator attempted to bribe him, demanding $60,000 to switch the charge against him from murder to causing the child’s accidental death on on 24 October 2019.
The footage seen by the court in Almaty shows Barakat – who faces up to 20 years in court if convicted of murder – a day earlier carrying Sophia into the hotel alongside Madina.
The video finishes with a medic rushing to the tragic child who was soon afterwards pronounced dead.
Mohamed faces up to 20 years in prison for murder if convicted. He pleads innocent. Pictured: Madina with her daughter Sophia
Barakat told judge Bakhytkhan Bakirbayev, who quizzed the pilot on Sophia’s ‘injuries from multiple impacts’, that he suffered an epileptic attack which he had been prone to since 1996-97 after a car accident in London.
‘I had a seizure,’ he said.
‘I don’t remember anything about what happened to Sophia.’
He said: ‘You are asking me to give you information while I was in a seizure but I cannot give you any.’
Madina and Mohamed pictured on their wedding day
There was ‘absolutely no possibility that I ever hurt a single hair on her head,’ he said.
‘Conscious or unconscious, I would never, ever hurt my own daughter.’
He also denied being in a drunken rage following a night out or taking ‘illegal substances’ after evidence had suggested he could have been on drugs during several days in Almaty between flights.
Evidence from the wife suggested he had a stash of cannabis in his hotel room before the tragedy, although police found no evidence of this, and that previously he had taken cocaine.
Barakat also alleged the senior police investigator on the murder probe ‘asked me for $60,000 to reclassify the case’.
The same detective had concluded the death was an ‘accident’ yet also demanded $1,000 in cash from Madina so that she could speak to him in police detention, the suspect claimed.
‘It is an absolute disgrace,’ he said.
Madina rescinded an earlier statement and strongly denied she now blamed Barakat for killing their daughter.
‘I don’t believe my husband killed our daughter as there are no reasons and motives for this,’ she said.
Receptionist Marzhan Ilyas recalled the British girl before the tragedy.
‘I remember their daughter was always smiling,’ she said.
Sources in Kazakhstan have denied a claim by Barakat in court earlier this month that he had started a hunger strike.