A BRADFORD woman told a court how she suffered five years of verbal and physical domestic abuse – after her estranged husband admitted multiple breaches of a non-molestation order.

Mohammad Usman, 33, of Fourth Avenue, Bradford, pleaded guilty to five counts of breaching a molestation order in 2023, the first occurring on October 17, with subsequent breaches on October 18, November 4, November 15 and December 15 last year.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Muhammad Usman from Bradford.Muhammad Usman from Bradford. (Image: UGC)

The order was issued after  Usman's wife, Sidrah Kanval, addressed the court with emotional testimony about how she suffered for five years.

In Leeds Magistrates Court on Tuesday, Crown prosecutor Christopher Bevan said: “The defendant and victim met in 2018. Their relationship began in Pakistan, but the relationship soured leading to a non-molestation order being granted in February 2023.

“That was breached when the defendant contacted her by sending What App messages.”

The couple had an arranged marriage, as Ms Kanval was British and Usman was from Pakistan.

Ms Kanval, who has waived her right to anonymity, told the court how initially in Pakistan, Usman was “caring and gentle” towards her, but when his UK visa was accepted that changed.

She said: “As a good Pakistani wife, it was understood by me to always keep your home affairs private and confidential.

“Sadly the life I lived with Muhammad Usman truly taught me what suffering is, what torture is.”

She said she suffered five years of domestic abuse, both verbal and physical. And she told the court how she was manipulated and demoralised “controlled on how to live, on where to go, what to do and how to do it”.

Although the couple had a child, she said the stress of their relationship led to seven miscarriages.

She said: “This life was real, this life was true. This was my story.

“My decision to agree to an arranged marriage was not the fairy tale I dreamed it to be.”

She also said since parting ways with Usman, he and his family “bashed her for being an indecent woman”.

“Women have no voice in our culture. I broke generational norms to be a woman to choose a better life and get away from the cycle of domestic violence. I seek justice for every domestic violence survivor.”

After hearing her victim impact statement, which she read from behind a screen, the Magistrate said to Ms Kanval: “We will take everything you said into consideration. You’ve been very brave. I hope you can get over this.”

Mr Bevan said: “You’ve seen what impact the defendant and this difficult relationship has had on her. In my submission, it’s very serious because of the number of times the breaches have occurred.

“I’m asking for an indefinite restraining order.”

In mitigation, Usman’s defence solicitor Balaal Khan, argued: “We’re not dealing with coercive behaviour or assault, we’re dealing with breaches.

“It was not direct communication, it was via WhatsApp messages.

“What he’s done is wrong, but they were not threats of physical violence. He’s suffered the consequences of his actions. He’s not going to be stupid enough to do these breaches again.

“As far as he is concerned, he knows full well the relationship is over.

“As a father, he wants contact with his child.

“We have no objections to the restraining order, but it shouldn’t be indefinite. You should always have an end date.”

Referring Usman for sentencing to Crown Court, the magistrate said: “This is a very serious breach of a non-molestation order.

“The starting point for a sentence is two years in prison with an average term of two to four years.

“This sentencing is due back in Crown Court on February 27, and until then you will be remanded into custody.”

After Tuesday’s case, Ms Kanval told the T&A: “I was so anxious and had so many conflicting emotions. I’ve been fighting to be heard.

“I was grateful to the magistrates and I’ve got no words to complement the Crown prosecutor.

“This is not just for me, this is for every Pakistani woman in my country and for every woman who suffers domestic violence.

“We’ve had an Islamic divorce but I don’t sponsor him anymore.”

The former couple are also going through a UK divorce.

And Ms Kanval said: “I just want to live a normal life again, to move on. Until today (Tuesday), I have not had any closure.”