Page last updated at 14:53 GMT, Tuesday, 14 October 2008 15:53 UK

No response to Hannah's 999 call

Hannah Foster
Hannah Foster told her kidnapper she was called Sarah, the court heard

The trial into the murder of 17-year-old Hannah Foster has heard a 999 call she made as she was being abducted by her alleged killer.

In the brief call she could be heard telling a man her name was Sarah - the name of her younger sister - and being told to "put her head down", Winchester Crown Court heard.

Hannah's mother Hilary, father Trevor and sister Sarah, 20, listened in court as the call was played to jurors.

Hannah had dialled 999 in an attempt to get help as she was being driven by her kidnapper, they were told.

But she was unable to speak to the operator and her call was disconnected, prosecutor Nicholas Haggan QC said.

She was found dead two days later in the West End area of Southampton after being raped and strangled.

There was no response to Hannah's attempts to get help
Nicholas Haggan, QC

Mr Haggan said Hannah waved goodbye to her friend Helen Wilkinson at a bus stop on 14 March 2003.

"At 11pm that evening, Hannah managed to use her mobile phone to contact the emergency services," Mr Haggan told the jury.

"She was able to dial 999. She was unable to speak to the operator. It's quite obvious from the recording that she was in a moving vehicle. In that vehicle with her was a man.

"That man was speaking to her in a heavily-accented voice.

Hannah Foster's family outside court
Hilary and Trevor Foster and their daughter Sarah heard the 999 call

"Hannah probably hoped that the operator would listen to the conversation that was taking place between this man and her, that the operator would be able to work from that conversation that she was being held against her will and that the operator would contact the police.

"Unfortunately Hannah would not have known that there is a system in place to prevent accidentally dialled emergency calls from blocking up the system.

"If the caller who has dialled 999 does not speak directly to the operator then the call is diverted into a process which results in automatic disconnection of the call and that is what happened.

"Hannah's call was disconnected after only a very short period of time. There was no response to Hannah's attempts to get help."

You will be able to hear that Hannah is very frightened
Nicholas Haggan, QC

He said that Hannah could be heard saying her name was Sarah, but that Mr and Mrs Foster had confirmed it was their dead daughter's voice.

"The operator is talking but despite that you will be able to hear that Hannah is very frightened," Mr Haggan said.

"At some stage in the brief conversation the man tells Hannah 'hold your head down please'."

Hannah's mother texted her daughter the following morning but there was no response.

Maninder Pal Singh Kohli, 40, denies the murder, kidnap, rape and false imprisonment of Hannah.

The trial continues.

Print Sponsor

Hannah killing: 999 transcript
15 Oct 08 |  Hampshire
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14 Oct 08 |  Hampshire

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