Murder trial told bloodstained claw hammer found lying next to young mother

Ridda Zanab

Ridda Zanab

First published in News

A BLOODSTAINED claw hammer was found lying next to a young mother killed by at least ten forceful blows to the head with the weapon, a jury at Bradford Crown Court heard yesterday.

Distressed members of Ridda Zanab's family left the courtroom for several minutes after details of her multiple, severe injuries were read out by prosecutor Jonathan Sharp.

Mrs Zanab's body was found by the police in the bedroom at her home in Alford Terrace, Lidget Green, Bradford, on November 4 last year.

Her husband Danish Irfan fled the country on a false passport after killing her the previous day.

Irfan, 22, denies murdering Mrs Zanab but admits her manslaughter.

Mr Sharp said Mrs Zanab, 21, died of multiple extremely serious head injuries.

She had 14 lacerations to her face, her nasal bones were broken and fragments of skull had been driven into her brain.

A heavily bloodstained claw hammer was found on the bed near her.

The jury was told Mrs Zanab survived for several minutes after the attack.

There were no traces of any drugs or alcohol in her body.

Mr Sharp said blood had spattered the floor, walls and ceiling and was found on Irfan's clothes left at the scene.

The hammer had been wielded while he stood by the bed and he had repeatedly struck at his wife's head while she was already bleeding.

Mrs Zanab had not moved significantly during the attack.

Irfan stayed in Pakistan until February when he voluntarily returned to the UK.

He began giving evidence in his defence in the afternoon and was set to resume today.

He told the jury his father was in the property business in Pakistan.

The family lived in an eight bedroom house with members of staff.

He was privately educated in his homeland and studied information and commerce before coming to the UK to a college in Manchester.

He was living in shared accommodation in Huddersfield when he met Ridda who was staying in a hostel in the town.

Irfan said she asked three times to marry him in the first few weeks. He declined twice, saying he did not want to marry yet.

He also told her his family would not approve of her drinking alcohol and smoking.

Irfan said he developed strong feelings for Ridda and they married in a Muslim ceremony on August 30, 2012.

They were happy at first but after they celebrated her birthday the following month, she began staying out late with friends several nights a week.

He was working full-time in a restaurant in Leeds and waited up for her.

Irfan said Ridda came home drunk and smelling of cannabis.

She called him rude names and said he was "slow" and "handicapped."

"It made me feel like nothing," he said.

"In our culture, a woman should respect her husband."

The trial continues.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree