August 2019

A man has been convicted for the murders of three generations of the same family after a house fire in Birkby, Huddersfield in 2002.

Shahid Mohammed, aged 37, formerly of Huddersfield, stood trial for the murders of five children and three adults following a house fire on Osbourne Road.

The victims of the fire were Zaib-Un-Nisa, 54, Nafeesa Aziz, 35, Mohammed Ateeq-ur-Rehman, 18, Tayyaba Batool, 13, Rabina Batool, 10, Ateeqa Nawaz, 5, Aneesa Zawaz, 2, and Najeebah Nawaz, just six-month-old.

Following a five-week trial at Leeds Crown Court, Mohammed was today found guilty by a jury of eight counts of murder of five children and three adults, and of one count of conspiracy to commit arson.

He will be sentenced later today

During the trial one surviving member of the family, Siddiqah Aziz, told how she managed to save her father from the inferno but was prevented from coming to the aid of other family members when she was met by a wall of flames.

Prosecutor Alistair MacDonald QC said: “All those who were upstairs were overwhelmingly likely to be trapped on the upper floors by the fire that rapidly developed once the petrol had been ignited.”

He said that the attack had been “carefully planned” and that as the men drove away from the scene, Mohammed said to Iqbal: “Did you see the way it went up?”

Mohammed was extradited back to the United Kingdom in October last year, by officers from West Yorkshire Police’s Homicide and Major Enquiry Team, with the support of the National Crime Agency, the British High Commission in Islamabad, and the Crown Prosecution Service and local authorities in Pakistan.

He had been held in prison in Pakistan since he was located and arrested in Rawalpindi on 22 January 2015 following a joint operation between West Yorkshire Police, the NCA and Pakistani authorities.

This was just the second extradition from Pakistan in more than 10 years. Mohammed Zubair was extradited from Pakistan in May 2016 and was found guilty of murder at Bradford Crown Court in February 2017.

His extradition also followed an investigation and extradition request from West Yorkshire Police.