Sara Sharif found under blanket in bunk bed with hands in front of her, court hears

15 September 2023, 16:06

Sara Sharif was found under a blanket in a bunk bed with her head up and her hands tied in front of her
Sara Sharif was found under a blanket in a bunk bed with her head up and her hands tied in front of her. Picture: Alamy

By Emma Soteriou

Sara Sharif was found under a blanket in a bunk bed with her head up and her hands in front of her, a court has heard.

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Sara's father, Urfan Sharif, stepmother, Beinash Batool, and uncle, Faisal Malik, are accused of the murder of the 10-year-old before her body was found at home in Woking on August 10.

They have also been charged with causing or allowing the death of a child.

The trio travelled to Pakistan a day before police discovered Sara's body and were arrested on Wednesday evening at Gatwick Airport as they disembarked a flight from Dubai.

They appeared at Guildford Magistrates Court on Friday, where they were remanded into custody following a 20-minute hearing.

The defendants spoke only to confirm their names, dates of birth and addresses and did not enter any pleas to the two charges.

Read More: Three people including father charged with murder of 10-year-old Sara Sharif

Read More: Sara Sharif's mother says 'weight has been lifted' as girl's father, stepmother and uncle arrested after returning to UK

Prosecutor Amanda Burrows told the court police were alerted to the situation when they received a call from Pakistan, which lasted eight minutes and 34 seconds, at 2.47am.

The flight had been booked on August 8, the prosecution said.

Officers arrived at the property and found the 10-year-old lying under a blanket, the court heard.

When they pulled the blanket back they found Sara lying fully clothed in the middle of the bed with her head up and her hands were lying on her chest, the hearing was told.

She was identified using the DNA of her mother Olga Sharif, who lives in Somerset, and another relative.

A post-mortem examination later found the youngster had suffered "multiple and extensive injuries" over a "sustained and extended" period of time.

The court heard her cause of death remains to be established, but she had "healed fractures" and injuries that "clearly demonstrate" the girl was subjected to "multiple events of violence".

She also died as a result of third-party involvement, the prosecution said.

Lawyers for the defendants indicated that they deny the charges and no application for bail was made.

Deputy Chief Magistrate Tan Ikram remanded the defendants into custody before they appear at the Old Bailey on Tuesday.

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