[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Friday, 11 February, 2005, 13:06 GMT
Man strangled wife during 'rage'
A husband who strangled his wife as their six young children slept in their family home has been jailed for life.

Mohammed Bismal, 34, of Luton, Beds, admitted the January 2004 murder of his 35-year-old wife Azmat before St Albans Crown Court on Thursday.

On Friday, Judge Findlay Baker sentenced Bismal to life in prison ordering he serve a minimum of 14 years and 74 days behind bars.

He said habitual wife-beater Bismal had strangled his wife in a "fit of rage".

Mr Stuart Trimmer, prosecuting, said to the outside world, the wife came across as popular and happy.

At Risk Register

However, she endured regular beatings from her husband, usually when he had been drinking, he said.

Up until 2001, the defendant had been a taxi driver but, following an accident, he had lost his licence and the family fell into debt.

Bismal's violence came to the notice of both Beds Police and social workers.

In 2002 Mrs Bismal went into a women's refuge and, the following year, her children were placed on the social service's at risk register.

The court heard that on 25 January Bismal alerted a relative - who was staying in the house at the time - to his wife's body, he claimed she had suffered a heart attack.

'Unjustified' rage

A post-mortem examination later revealed she had been strangled.

Passing sentence, Judge Baker told Bismal: "Over the years you violently abused your wife, making her life for much of the time a misery.

"Finally, in a fit of rage, wholly unjustified by anything she said or did, you strangled her to death, your wife and the mother of your six children."

The judge said from then on until Thursday of this week when his trial had been due to start, he had refused to accept he was guilty of her murder.

Judge Baker said Bismal had even tried to deceive the authorities into believing he had been suffering from a mental illness.

"But your guilt has now caught you up," he added.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific