Three relatives charged with British girl's murder after Pakistan manhunt
AFP | London
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
UK police investigating the death of a 10-year-old girl said Friday they had charged her father, stepmother and uncle with murder after they returned to Britain from Pakistan.
Sara Sharif's body was discovered at the family's home near Woking, southern England, on August 10. A post-mortem examination revealed she had sustained "multiple and extensive injuries" over a sustained period.
Her relatives were arrested late on Wednesday at London's Gatwick Airport after disembarking a flight from Dubai following a month on the run in Pakistan.
Police said Urfan Sharif, 41, his partner Beinash Batool, 29, and his brother Faisal Malik, 28, fled to Pakistan to take refuge with relatives before Sara's body was found, sparking an international manhunt.
All three have also been charged with causing or allowing the death of a child, Surrey police said in a statement. They are in custody and due to appear in court later on Friday.
A Pakistan police spokesman earlier said that Sharif, Batool and Malik had voluntarily returned to Britain with the prior knowledge of authorities.
Surrey police said previously the three were thought to have flown to Islamabad on August 9, the day before Sara's body was discovered.
An early morning emergency call alerting officers to Sara's death was made from Pakistan by a man identifying himself as the father, detectives said.
The house was otherwise empty, and the manhunt continued with Interpol and Britain's foreign ministry coordinating with authorities in Pakistan.
Five of Sara's purported siblings, aged between one and 13 and brought to Pakistan with the adults, were discovered at the home of Urfan Sharif's father on Monday.
Sara's Polish mother, Olga Sharif, has said she could barely recognise her daughter's small, battered body when she identified her at the mortuary last month.
She told Polish television one of her cheeks was swollen and the other side of her face was bruised.
Olga and Urfan separated in 2015, and Sara and her older brother had lived with their mother until a family court determined in 2019 that they should reside with their father, according to UK media.