Danish court finds Pakistani family guilty of honor killing
A landmark verdict finds nine people guilty for conspiring to kill a young Pakistani woman and her husband in the largest honour killing case ever tried in Europe.
The High Court of Eastern Denmark delivered a 'guilty' verdict on Tuesday to all nine defendants in the most far-reaching honour killing ever tried in Europe.
The verdict is considered a landmark finding, since not only the brother who fired the gun that killed Ghazala Khan was found guilty.
The court also found Ghazala's father and seven others guilty of conspiring to murder the young Pakistani woman and her husband for disobeying orders not to marry last September. Jurors determined that a group of uncles, aunts and acquaintances apparently plotted to lure the couple to the train station of Slagelse in western Zealand, where the brother waited with a loaded gun.
Ghazala suffered fatal wounds while her newly wed husband narrowly escaped death.
Although lawyers of seven of the defendants sought a reduced sentence for their clients, jurors rejected their plea that mitigating circumstances should release a milder sentence.
The verdict came as no surprise to Vagn Greve, a law professor at Copenhagen University. Jurors merely made use of Danish law's broad guidelines in defining who acts as an accomplice in a crime, he said.
'From what I have heard and read, I cannot see that we have done anything new. The jurors found that existing rules should be put to use.'
Legal experts in Germany, Sweden and other countries have followed the case closely, since it marks the first time accomplices have been found guilty in an honour killing.
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