Monday, March 19, 2007

Britain: A Somali refugee who stabbed her neighbor to death in front of her family must spend at least 15 years behind bars

Oldham Evening Chronicle:

Shukri Bilal (22) plunged a kitchen knife into the neck of Lisa Bamford (29) — her neighbour in Rothesay Road, Oldham — last August.

Lisa had earlier helped the refugee settle in to her home by decorating and giving her furniture. Bilal had arrived in the UK from Kenya in January, 2006.

A jury at Manchester Crown Court heard that the killing happened after a row broke out in the street.

Bilal took the knife and climbed over the garden fence separating the houses before entering Lisa’s home through the back door.

She burst into the front room, where a group of people were sitting, and shouted “I’m going to kill you all” before stabbing Lisa once in the neck.

Bilal was convicted of murder last month and jailed for life. At the High Court in London, trial judge Mr Justice Beatson set her tariff — the minimum term she must serve — at 15 years.

Even taking account of the time she spent on remand before the trial, the ruling means she can have no hope of release until 2021.

And the judge warned her that she would only be released when the Parole Board ruled that she was no longer dangerous. He also recommended that she be deported to her native Somalia when she had served her sentence.

Describing the attack on Lisa as ferocious, Mr Justice Beatson said the fatal blow was struck so hard that the mother-of-one’s rib bone was chipped.

He added that Bilal also attacked other members of Lisa’s family and threatened to kill them.

The judge said that Bilal — who has never shown any remorse — was armed with a second knife and threw something at the front window after she left the house.

Lawyers for Bilal said that she was suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder after an unhappy childhood in Somalia and Kenya. The judge also heard that Bilal was suffering depression as a result of her experiences.

The August 22 incident was sparked when Bilal’s daughter made an allegation against Lisa’s child and told other children not to play with her.

Lisa and her sister, Chloe Riley, confronted Bilal, who swung a punch, but suffered a broken nose when she was hit back.

Mr Justice Beatson said he had taken into account Bilal’s relatively young age, her previous good character and the fact there was no long-standing premeditation before the killing.

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Woman found guilty of murdering Oldham Mum

Minimum term for stabbing murder

Killer refugee warned she faces life in jail

Woman guilty of neighbour's murder

Woman jailed for 'ferocious' killing of neighbour


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