02/Sep/2014 - Last News Update: 21:57

Shafilea Ahmed's sister talks of 'relief'

Category: England

Published: 24th May 2012 15:07:36

Shafilea Ahmed's sister has told a court it was a "relief" to tell police after seven years that her parents had murdered the teenager.

The 17-year-old went missing from her home in Warrington, Cheshire, in 2003 and was found dead six months later.

Asked why she had kept quiet for so long, Alesha Ahmed said: "I think it was not until I went to uni I saw how wrong family life was."

Iftikhar, 52, and Farzana Ahmed, 49, both deny murder.

At Chester Crown Court, Ms Ahmed, 23, said how she had made the disclosure that she witnessed the murders to her solicitor and a police officer while she was in custody after arranging a robbery at the family home in Liverpool Road.

Questioned by Andrew Edis QC, for the prosecution, about why she had made the claim after all these years, Ms Ahmed said: "I think at that point I was really suffering with the family (and) the build-up to the robbery.

I think what happened to my sister was wrong but because it's your parents you think it's normal because you still love them”

"It all got too much, and to be honest I think it was a relief more than anything to be able to tell someone finally."

She told the court that when she started university she realised "how wrong family life was".

"When you get used to something, it becomes normal and that's when I saw it wasn't normal, really," Ms Ahmed said.

"I think what happened to my sister was wrong but because it's your parents you think it's normal because you still love them.

"I think at uni I did feel the way my sister had - you want to fit in with everyone else but you are still being forced to live in a different way.

"I think that's what made me crack."

Ms Ahmed told the court she had been in a state of "emotional distress" when she made the witness statement about the alleged murder of her sister.

She said it had "been haunting her" for a long time.

Ms Ahmed told the jury her relationship with her parents "completely broke down" after she refused to marry potential suitors they had set up.

"I felt I was going down the same path that my sister was going down," the 23-year-old said.

"The pressure of going to Pakistan, being 21-years-old at the time and supposed to be married.

"I think I just absolutely snapped. It was either living the way they wanted me to live or live on my own, both were a struggle."

She said she "wasn't thinking properly" when she arranged for the robbery to take place.

The jury was told the incident, on 25 August 2010, saw three or four masked men burst into the house and search for money as Ms Ahmed, her mother, brother and sisters were inside.

Ms Ahmed told the court she was arrested after her mother and brother told police the thieves had known her name.

"I was the one who made contact with them to come over," she said.

"However, as you can see from events I had no control and they did turn on me as well."

Shafilea went missing from the family home in September 2003 and her decomposed remains were discovered on the banks of the River Kent in Cumbria in February 2004.

The trial has been adjourned until Monday.

Source:
BBC News External Link Show Citation

Latest News

Harvard Citation

BBC News, 2012. Shafilea Ahmed's sister talks of 'relief' [Online] (Updated 24th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1430672/Shafilea-Ahmeds-sister-talks-of-relief [Accessed 2nd Sep 2014]

News In Other Categories

  • Troll Peter Nunn guilty of MP Stella Creasy rape tweets

    A man has been found guilty of bombarding a Labour MP with abusive messages on Twitter after she supported a feminist campaign.
  • No prosecution over Druids' Ardoyne Fleadh comments

    There will be no prosecutions over complaints about the performance of a folk band at the Ardoyne Fleadh last month.
  • Bristol Academy extends reach overseas with first foreign students

    With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
  • Ebola response lethally inadequate, says MSF

    A global military intervention is needed to curb the largest ever Ebola outbreak, according to the medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres.
  • Apple confirms accounts compromised but denies security breach

    Apple has confirmed that some celebrities' iCloud accounts were broken into, but says it has found no evidence that this was caused by a breach of its security systems.
  • Scottish independence: Referendum race 'may have got tighter'

    For the past three or four months or so, the referendum race has looked as though it was stalled.