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Last Updated: Thursday, 11 January 2007, 17:48 GMT
Man jailed over bride's murder
Shazad Khan
Khan had no previous convictions
A man who beat his teenage bride to death months after he flew her from Pakistan for an arranged marriage has been jailed for life for her murder.

Shazad Khan, 25, from Roundhay, Leeds, was sentenced to a minimum of 15 years after a trial at Leeds Crown Court.

The court heard he beat Sabia Rani, 19, severely over several weeks last year leaving her with serious tissue damage and 12 damaged ribs.

Police said Sabia Rani's home had effectively become her prison.

The Recorder of Leeds, Judge Norman Jones, QC said the victim spoke no English and had to try to integrate into a westernised Asian family.

He told Khan: "She depended on you and she was a vulnerable character."

This was one of the worst examples of domestic abuse I have seen
Det Sup Steve Fear

The court heard the relationship deteriorated in England and the couple began arguing.

The judge added: "I am satisfied that what happened in this case, is one of the major contributing factors, was the fact that you were working to such an extent that when you came home you were short-tempered and paid her no attention at all.

"You beat her unmercifully. You beat her to the extent that the skin and underlying tissue had begun to separate and she had fractures to her ribs."

Sabia Rani
Sabia Rani was subjected to sustained abuse

The judge said there was evidence of the beatings taking place over a three-week period.

He conceded that Khan had not intended to kill his bride. The judge said Khan was a man of no previous convictions and the beatings were "out of character".

Det Sup Steve Fear, from West Yorkshire Police, said: "This was one of the worst examples of domestic abuse I have seen.

"Sabia Rani was subjected to sustained and systematic abuse over a long period of time in her own home, a home which was little more than a prison to her.

"Shazad Khan's conviction sends a strong message to abusers that we will make every effort to ensure you are convicted of your crime.

"I hope it also encourages other victims of domestic violence not to suffer in silence but to come forward and speak to those who can help them."

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