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Deaf girl kept as sex slave by elderly couple for 10 years

Pakistani victim uses interpreter to tell jury of horrifying ordeal

  • Daily Mail
  • Published: 00:00 February 15, 2012
  • Gulf News

Picture for illustrative purposes only
  • Image Credit: Gulf News Archive
  • She said: "I just cleaned. I was sad and weak because I was working so hard. They used to hit me from being very, very little, all the time. Picture used for illustrative purposes only

London A deaf and dumb girl trafficked into the UK to act as a ‘slave' to an elderly couple for almost a decade on Monday used sign language to tell of her life of horror.

Locked in a cellar each night from the age of 10, she was allegedly raped and forced to carry out household chores, including cooking, cleaning, sewing, and washing.

I was weak because I was working so hard. I had to clean all the time and that was it — that was my life. I'd cook and clean for hours

Pakistani girl, victim of elderly UK couple

If she was too slow, Ilyas Ashar, 83, and his wife Tallat, 66, would beat her around the head or drag her by her hair, a court heard. The victim told a jury how she would sit crying for hours locked in a cellar.

Judge Peter Lakin said the victim had been questioned by police 14 times. All the interviews were recorded and will be viewed by the jury.

Sign language

In the first interview the girl — who is profoundly deaf and cannot speak — used sign language to tell of her life as a ‘slave'. She said she was held prisoner in a basement at the house in Eccles, Greater Manchester, for nine years and forced to sleep on a concrete floor without a bed or toilet.

The victim said she was brought to the UK from Pakistan and sent to live with the Ashars to carry out chores. She told the court how she would be woken up by Mrs Ashar at 7am every day and hardly had time to eat or drink.

She said: "I just cleaned. I was sad and weak because I was working so hard. They used to hit me from being very, very little, all the time.

"I was weak because I was working so hard. I had to clean all the time and that was it — that was my life. I'd cook and clean for hours."

Hit for no reason

She claimed Mrs Ashar would sometimes hit her for no reason with a rolling pin or slap her as she carried out her work.

The woman — now believed to be around 20 ­— said: "She used to hit me in the face and cut it with her ring on her left finger. She would be hitting and slapping me, and throwing things around destroying them."

The girl claimed she would then be forced back into the cellar and the door locked behind her.

"I would be down in the cellar, sitting alone and very upset," she said. "I could not get out."

Shown a photo of Mrs Ashar, to identify her alleged abuser, the victim said: "That's the woman who used to hit me and beat me all the time as I was growing up." Shown a photo of Mr Ashar, who allegedly repeatedly raped her, the victim said: "The old man, he's bad. He's the one who has sex with me."

Couple arrested

The pair, who run a market stall and sell cars, were arrested after police went to their house in Eccles in June 2009 to find the girl asleep in the cellar.

Earlier, the court heard how the girl first arrived in the UK on June 24, 2000 with a passport stating she was 19.

However, subsequent medical tests showed the girl was more likely to have been around ten.

Comments (38)

  1. Added 19:41 February 15, 2012

    this shows how cruel humans can be! this couple should be punsihed to sweep and clean all public places/toilets and shoudl be imprisoned after cleaning for the rest of their lives.

    Arif, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  2. Added 19:36 February 15, 2012

    Both couple should be locked in the same cell without bed or toilet...this is the punishment given to them till their death.

    Ramar, dubai, United Arab Emirates

  3. Added 19:12 February 15, 2012

    I hope the court will give maximum punishment for edged couple, they don't have human blood, really animals.

    RAJU ISSAC, DUBAI, United Arab Emirates

  4. Added 19:11 February 15, 2012

    The couple should be put in the Prison and made to scrub and clean the Prison Toilets for the rest of their lives.

    JOE, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

  5. Added 18:34 February 15, 2012

    Theres no punishment for such people!

    Zaeem Tahir, Islamabad, Pakistan

  6. Added 17:32 February 15, 2012

    i literally cried when i read this..for a second i thought of my daughter. poor girl....may god bless her...

    manoj, abu dhabi, United Arab Emirates

  7. Added 14:42 February 15, 2012

    and just where are her parents? They should be thrown into the gallows as well.

    zeenat, Cape Town, South Africa

  8. Added 14:32 February 15, 2012

    Hang these people in public.

    saeed, Karachi, Pakistan

  9. Added 14:12 February 15, 2012

    I can't believe this, they both did what no one can accept it... they have to give punishment according to their sins...

    Babar Siddiq, karachi, Pakistan

  10. Added 13:55 February 15, 2012

    All Human and Child Traffickers should not be pardonned. The Hardest punishments should be imposed on them. It is just unimaginable how a person can be so cruel and inhuman to another person especially to a child !!!! Just imagne how many more cases are out there, that are yet waiting to be exposed and victims to be saved !

    Ahmad Zemy Kamarulzaman CMILT, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

  11. View more comments

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