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Friday, October 22, 2021

Sons of American couple jailed in Qatar permitted to leave country



The family of an American couple jailed in Qatar over the death of their 8-year-old daughter have finally been allowed to leave the country, the Associated Press reports.

Matt and Grace Huang, who face charges of starving their daughter Gloria to death, have been in jail since January. Their two surviving children were briefly housed at Dhreima, a government-run orphanage, but in recent months have been staying with their grandmother here as the court case continues.

According to AP, the two children were permitted to leave Qatar over the weekend and are now staying in Washington state with relatives.

Gloria, who was adopted by the Huangs from Ghana, died at Al Emadi hospital after her heart stopped of causes that remain unknown, according to the couple’s American legal counsel.

Eating problems

A medical examiner from Hamad Hospital testified in June that she appeared to be emaciated, but also said that she did not die of starvation. However, the child had not eaten for four days prior to her death.

The family said this was because she had an eating disorder due to growing up in extreme poverty, a diagnosis supported by a leading forensic pathologist who has examined Gloria’s case.

The Huangs two other children are also adopted. One boy is biologically related to Gloria, and another son is from Uganda.

In addition to their lawyer in Qatar, the couple has retained the California Innocence Project, which has set up a website with the David House International Crisis agency and American law firm Lewis and Roca to clear the Huangs’ name.

A representative of the groups confirmed to Doha News that the children were back in the US but declined to comment further. The next hearing is Nov. 6.


Credit: Photo for illustrative purposes only by Pyonko Omeyama

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