Beds, Herts & Bucks

Aylesbury man admits mother's stabbing murder

Usman Shahzad
Image caption Usman Shahzad changed his plea at the last moment

A man has admitted murdering his mother at her home in Buckinghamshire.

Usman Shahzad, 21, was due to stand trial accused of stabbing businesswoman Assia Shahzad, 40, of Wendover Road, Aylesbury, on 9 October 2010.

But he changed his plea to guilty at High Wycombe Magistrates' Court, sitting as Aylesbury Crown Court.

The court was told a 16-year-old, who has not been named for legal reasons and denies murder, was "complicit" in the attack.

Shahzad was warned he faces a life sentence. Judge Christopher Tyrer said: "In my view, this is an utterly abhorrent murder."

'Joint enterprise'

His mother was taken to hospital but died of her injuries.

Shahzad, of Havelock Street, Aylesbury, was remanded in custody ahead of sentencing.

Opening the case, prosecutor Ben Gumpert told the court Shahzad "played the principal role" in his mother's murder and had pleaded guilty to the charge.

Referring to the 16-year-old in the dock, he said: "The prosecution say he was plainly complicit in the killing", adding the actions of the two males had been a "joint enterprise".

He said: "There had been bad feeling between Assia Shahzad and Usman Shahzad that may have been caused by the fact Assia Shahzad had found a new husband in Pakistan.

"Usman Shahzad feared a hoped-for financial inheritance was no longer secure as a result of the marriage."

Mr Gumpert told the court how Usman Shahzad obtained a machete.

Mr Gumpert said Assia Shahzad was chased through a first and second bedroom into the en-suite bathroom, where she was attacked with a machete and shower pole.

Mr Gumpert said the presence of blood on the 16-year-old's shirt suggested he been involved in the attack.

'Hacked to death'

Assia Shahzad had lodgers staying at the large detached brick property.

The court was told they could hear screaming and loud rock music being played to cover the cries behind the locked bathroom door.

Referring to the teenager, he said the prosecution could not say for certain he was physically involved in the fighting and violence.

But he added it was "difficult to imagine" what explanation there could be for the failure to open the door, other than the fact he supported the actions as Assia Shahzad was "hacked to death".

The case was adjourned for the day and will continue on Thursday.

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