Sara Sharif: Father and two other relatives to face trial next year accused of 10-year-old’s murder

 (ES Composite)
(ES Composite)

The father of Sara Sharif has been ordered to face trial next autumn as a court heard the 10-year-old suffered a “constellation” of injuries culminating in her death.

On Tuesday, Urfan Sharif appeared at the Old Bailey alongside Sara’s stepmother, Beinash Batool, and uncle, Faisal Malik.

All three are charged with murdering Sara and causing or allowing the death of a child.

The court heard that Surrey Police had found Sara’s body after receiving a call from Pakistan, which lasted eight minutes and 34 seconds, at 2.47am on August 10.

She was identified using the DNA of her mother, Olga Sharif, who lives in Somerset, and another relative.

Prosecutor Giles Bedoe told the court that Sara was found to have “a constellation of healed and healing injuries”.

They allegedly included a healed fracture to her collar bone, a healed fracture to the hyoid bone in her neck, multiple rib fractures,  bruising to her torso and limbs, and a brain haemorrhage.

Mr Bedoe added: “There is quite a significant amount of post-mortem work ongoing and that will continue.”

At the court hearing on Tuesday, Sharif, 41, Batool, 29, and Malik, 28, appeared at the Old Bailey by video-link from Belmarsh high-security jail in south London and Bronzefield women’s prison in Surrey.

They spoke only to confirm their identities and dates of birth before a timetable was set for their case.

The Recorder of London, Judge Mark Lucraft KC, said a plea hearing will take place before him on December 1.

A six-week trial at the Old Bailey was provisionally set to start on September 2 2024.

Judge Lucraft said a decision will be made later on whether the trial should be heard by a High Court judge.

The defendants were all remanded into custody until their next hearing.