• Switzerland's news in English

Dad killed daughter in brutal axe murder

Meritxell Mir · 13 Jan 2012, 17:25

Published: 13 Jan 2012 14:32 GMT+01:00
Updated: 13 Jan 2012 17:25 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

A Swiss prosecutor has described as a "veritable slaughter" the vicious axe murder of a 16-year-old girl by her 53-year-old Pakistani father, who believed his daughter had tarnished her family's honour.

The charge sheet presented by prosecutor Ulrich Krättli suggests he will call for the accused to be given life in prison, the maximum sentence under Swiss law, when the high-profile case goes to trial on March 14th.

On May 10th 2010, 16-year-old Swera was picked up at a Zurich police station by both her parents. She had been held there by police after she was arrested for a minor theft.

Once back at their apartment in Höngg, on the outskirts of the city, a heated argument broke out between father and daughter, newspaper Tages Anzeiger reports.

The girl said she wanted to leave home permanently and started to pack a bag. She then went down to the basement of the building to get a pair of shoes. While she was gone, her father allegedly retrieved an axe from the balcony and hid it in the bedroom he shared with his wife.

Once she was back in the apartment, the girl went into her parents' bedroom to pick up some of her belongings. When she bent down to retreive some items from the wardrobe, her father hit her with the axe on the back of the head, the prosecutor says. The man struck his daughter 19 times with the axe: 12 times with the blade and seven with the blunt end.

The teenager not die instantly, but lay on the ground in agonising pain for several minutes until her life finally slipped away.

The father left the axe between her legs, pointing to the feet, a gesture Krättli does not want to interpret, but that usually has sexual connotations and expresses the motives behind the murder, newspaper Tages Anzeiger reports.

After washing his hands, he left the apartment and called his wife to say he had killed his daughter. Fifteen minutes later, he called the police, who arrested him shortly after near his apartment.

In an interview with newspaper Blick, Swera's boyfriend explained that the girl's parents had strongly disapproved of her relationship with him, primarily because he was a Christian. The boy said she was desperate to get away from her parents and had already sought help from a local youth shelter.

According to the prosecutor, the defendant killed his daughter because she had violated his archaic values and had brought shame on the family. Krättli says the Pakistani man had planned the killing “in cold blood”.

The 53-year-old man has remained in custody since the girl's death. He will be tried in March not just for the brutal killing of his daughter, but also for allegedly trying to kill her three weeks earlier.

Story continues below…

On April 20th, the pair had argued after the girl's father suspected she had been smoking marijuana.

Seizing his chance while she was in the bathroom, he pushed her into the bathtub, turned on the tap and threw a hairdryer into the water. 

He wanted to electrocute her, the prosecutor alleges, but his attempt failed because of an in-built security system in the appliance to prevent electric shocks upon contact with water. On that occasion, the 16-year-old girl managed to get away before running to a friend’s home in her wet clothes.

Meritxell Mir (news@thelocal.ch)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

2012-01-18 18:32:02 by pgabdo
Send the father to the USA, he can live with Obama :-(
2012-01-17 16:17:26 by ytdontplay
That is what happens when a western country stupidly accepts third world scumbags. What a religion of peace.
2012-01-17 07:40:24 by midusdew
The father is a disgrace and brought shame to himself and his family. The daughter was the victim to his evil insanity. A simple question to all of you who think otherwise. Was the act of the father honorable or Satanist? The answer: Let He Who Is Without Sin Cast The First Stone. Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.
Today's headlines
‘Scary clown’ craze hits streets of Zurich
Photo: Pedro Pardo/AFP

Police in Zurich have warned so-called ‘scary clowns’ that they could face charges, following a number of incidents in the city.

VIDEO: driver chases runaway car on Swiss motorway
Image: Neuchâtel police

Shocking footage shows the moment a man dodged lorries to chase after his runaway car on a Swiss motorway.

Saas-Fee crowdfunds low-cost season ski pass
Saas-Fee is hoping to attract 99,999 season pass holders. Photo: Denis Emery/Photo-genic.ch

Skiers could get their hands on a whole season pass for just 222 francs ($223) in the Swiss resort of Saas Fee this winter – if enough people want one.

Swiss billionaire fined for dodging import tax
Urs Schwarzenbach owns the luxury Dolder Grand hotel in Zurich. Photo: Wilhem Rosenkranz

Urs Schwarzenbach faces a $4 million fine for failing to properly declare some 200 artworks imported into Switzerland.

Muslim woman wins headscarf court battle
Photo: Jack Guez / AFP

A Swiss court has ruled against a company that fired a longtime employee after she began wearing the Muslim headscarf.

Montreux throws hat in Olympic rings
Could Montreux host the 2026 Games? Photo: Ivo Scholz/Swiss Tourism

Montreux is to put itself forward as the host city for the 2026 winter Olympics as part of a potential bid by the cantons of Valais and Vaud.

Geneva car share scheme could help reduce city traffic
Catch a Car is aimed at short hops within a city. Photo: Catch a Car

Catch a Car, already in Basel, launches in Geneva next month.

Swiss women will ‘work for free’ for the rest of year
Female employees in Switzerland earn 19.3 percent less than their male colleagues. File photo: Randy Kashka

Switzerland's gender pay gap means from today, Friday October 21st, women in the country will effectively be working for free for the rest of 2016.

Swiss luxury watches stolen in Paris raid
Police outside the Girard-Perregaux watch store on Thursday. Photo: Bertrand Guay/AFP

The 10 Girard-Perregaux watches are worth half a million euros in total.

Brother-in-law arrested over murder of Swiss teacher
The victim worked in a school in Stabio, near the town of Mendrisio. Photo: Oliver Graf

The primary school teacher was found dead in Ticino earlier this week.

Photo: Richard Juilliard/AFP
Man makes Geneva airport bomb threat ‘for a joke’
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
Photo: AFP
Solar Impulse team reveals plans for unmanned plane
File photo: Martin Abegglen
Swiss to vote on passport rules for 3rd gen foreigners
Photo: AFP
Swiss wingsuit hotspot Lauterbrunnen won’t impose ban
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Six reasons Switzerland isn’t as boring as you might think
Photo: Swiss Tourism
Report: Switzerland one of world’s best places for girls
Photo: The Local
Thief returns Swiss cow bells worth thousands
File photo: Wikimedia Commons
One in three rapists isn’t locked up: statistics
Photo: activistin.ch
Tampon-tax protest turns Zurich fountains red
Photo: AFP
Geneva police to lift ban on bearded officers
Photo: Marcel Gillieron/AFP
Suicide chef’s restaurant keeps Michelin stars
Photo: Lara de Salis
11 things the Swiss get tired of hearing abroad
Photo:  Ivo Scholz/Swiss-image.ch
Survey: expats in Switzerland have money but few friends
Photo: AFP
Swiss press criticize Bern’s 'capitulation' on immigration
Photo: Jura Trois Lacs tourism
German ex-policeman is Swiss city’s new hermit
Photo: Dmitry A. Mottl
Ticino votes to favour local workers over foreigners
Photo: file
Some deodorants could cause breast cancer: Swiss study
Photo: Royal Savoy
In pictures: Inside the latest Swiss luxury hotel
Photo: AFP
Geneva airport bomb hoaxer faces 90,000-franc bill
Photo: Schaffhausen police
Mother leaves toddler son alone in car to go clubbing
Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP
Swiss populist attacked by knife-wielding pensioner
jobs available