Tuesday, February 27, 2007

More Muslim Family Values

Feb 27, 2007 - THE trial of a taxi driver accused of bludgeoning his wife and three young children to death with a rounders bat began today. Manchester Crown Court heard Rahan Arshad, 36, repeatedly clubbed his family with the weapon before he fled to Thailand.

The bodies lay undiscovered at their home in Cheadle Hulme, Manchester, for almost a month. When they were discovered, all the bodies were heavily decomposed. DNA traces from all the family members were recovered from the bat and blood samples were found on the Nike trainers Arshad was wearing when he was arrested.

Opening the case for the prosecution, Paul Reid QC told the jury that much of the evidence they would hear would be distressing. He detailed how the prosecution claims Arshad killed his wife Uzma Rahan, 32, sons Adam, 11, and Abbas, eight, and daughter Henna, six, last July because he suspected his wife of having an affair.

Mr Reid told the jury the couple had an arranged marriage in 1992. Their relationship hit the rocks around Easter 2003 because Arshad believed his wife was having an affair with a married man known as Nikki.

The court heard Uzma, who worked as a dinner lady, was from Pakistan and had moved to Manchester with her husband. Arshad was described as “jealous and possessive” and disapproved of her western style clothing.

In the day before the killings Arshad showered his wife with expensive gifts.

He told the family he had booked them a holiday in Dubai but in fact had bought them no tickets. Instead Arshad booked himself a ticket to Thailand departing on July 29. The murders were expected to have taken place on the night of July 28. Arshad was stopped on August 30 at the Thailand-Malaysia border by police. When interviewed he refused to answer questions but on January 26 this year he gave a defence statement to prosecutors.

Part of this statement claimed he had returned home on July 28 to find his children dead and he believed his wife had murdered them. Arshad claimed he was provoked into bludgeoning his wife with the rounders bat because she had murdered his children.

He denies four counts of murder.

He was provoked.