Page last updated at 16:51 GMT, Thursday, 8 October 2009 17:51 UK

Teenage girl 'murdered by father'

Tulay Goren
Tulay Goren's body has never been found

A girl who disappeared a decade ago was murdered by her father in a so-called "honour killing", a court has heard.

Tulay Goren, 15, a Kurdish Turk from Woodford Green, north London, vanished in 1999 and her body has never been found, the Old Bailey was told.

Her father Mehmet Goren, 49, and uncles Cuma Goren, 42, and Ali Goren, 55, both from Walthamstow, all deny murder.

The men also deny conspiracy to murder her boyfriend, Halil Unal, 30, between May 1998 and February 1999.

Tulay was last seen alive on 7 January 1999 with her father Mehmet Goren, of Navestock Crescent, Woodford Green, who is alleged to have killed her later that day.

Jonathan Laidlaw QC, prosecuting, said Tulay was killed "to restore the so-called honour" of the family, who originate from Turkey.

The term was an "appalling and inappropriate way" to "dignify" the offence, he added.

She was caught and literally pulled back into the house and then persuaded to drink some coffee which had been laced with sleeping tablets
Jonathan Laidlaw QC, prosecuting

Mr Laidlaw said the murder could not have taken place without the "approval and permission" of Mehmet Goren's older brother Ali Goren, of Brettenham Road, Walthamstow, who was many miles away from London at the time.

Mr Goren's younger brother Cuma, of Evesham Avenue, Walthamstow, was consulted about the decision.

Mr Laidlaw said it was not clear whether he was present during the killing but it appeared he was involved in the "clean-up and disposal" of the body.

"What ultimately caused the most terrible of problems within this family and was ultimately to lead to Tulay's murder was a relationship she formed in London with a man called Halil Unal," he added.

'Kiss Tulay goodbye'

The court heard Mr Unal was brought up as a Sunni Muslim while the Gorens were from the Alevi branch of the faith.

While they came from places no more than 60 miles apart in Turkey, a relationship between the sects "would not have been tolerated".

The defendants decided to kill the couple "to avoid further humiliation" and Mehmet Goren called Mr Unal asking him to take away the teenager.

But he heeded Tulay's warning about her family luring him into a "trap" and stayed away, the court heard.

The night before the alleged murder Tulay tried to escape but "was caught and literally pulled back into the house and then persuaded to drink some coffee which had been laced with sleeping tablets", said Mr Laidlaw.

Her mother was sent with the other children to Cuma Goren's house and her eight-year-old brother was asked to "to kiss Tulay goodbye".

Mother prosecution witness

The jury heard when Tulay's mother returned she noticed a "deep injury" to her husband's palm, found two kitchen knives and several bin bags missing and the girl's clothes gone.

A day later she also noticed the garden had been dug up.

The court heard Mehmet Goren told his wife their daughter had run away and would be disowned by the family, but no-one reported her missing.

Police were alerted to Tulay's disappearance by her boyfriend.

Mehmet Goren, was arrested in 1999 but maintained she had simply run off, jurors heard.

Mr Laidlaw said the girl's mother Hanim Gorin, had said very little at the time but the mother would now give evidence for the prosecution.

He said that last year, approaching 10 years on from Tulay's disappearance, police returned to the case.

The case continues.

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