Shafilea Ahmed's parents charged with her murder

Shafilea Ahmed A coroner ruled that Shafilea Ahmed was unlawfully killed

The parents of Cheshire schoolgirl Shafilea Ahmed, the suspected victim of a so-called honour killing, have been charged with her murder.

The 17-year-old was last seen in Warrington in September 2003.

Her decomposed remains were found on the banks of the River Kent in Cumbria in February 2004.

Iftikhar Ahmed, 51, and Farzana Ahmed, 48, of Liverpool Road in Great Sankey, Warrington, have always denied any involvement in their daughter's death.

The couple appeared at Halton Magistrates' Court on Wednesday, and were remanded in custody.

They are now due to appear before Manchester Crown Court on Friday.

Mr and Mrs Ahmed were initially arrested on suspicion of kidnapping their daughter in December 2003. In June 2004 they were released without charge when the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) ruled there was insufficient evidence against them.

They were arrested on suspicion of her murder in 2010 and released on police bail.

The CPS authorised Cheshire police to charge the couple on Wednesday.

The CPS authorised Cheshire police to charge Shafilea's parents

Two post-mortem examinations failed to determine how Ms Ahmed died but a verdict of unlawful killing was recorded at her inquest in 2008.

The inquest heard she was a bright and intelligent young woman who wanted to go to university and become a lawyer.

Pathologists said she was most likely strangled or suffocated and South Cumbria coroner Ian Smith said he believed she was probably murdered.

The teenager went missing on 11 September 2003 and was reported missing by a teacher a week later.

Her body was discovered by workmen and she was identified by her jewellery and dental records.

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