Beds, Herts & Bucks

Bedford man 'does not remember' attack on estranged wife

A bus driver accused of murdering his estranged wife in Bedford has told a jury he does not remember the attack.

Sajid Mahmood, 52, of Sandy Road, Bedford, admits the manslaughter of Afsana Kosser, 35, but denies murder.

Mr Mahmood told Luton Crown Court he was not bothered that Ms Kosser was seeing another man but feared he would lose his children.

He said his "world had collapsed" because he believed he had lost a custody hearing the day before.

On 11 April last year, the day after the court hearing, Mr Mahmood waited in his car outside her house in Rosamond Road for her to walk to work.

'Heard screams'

Speaking through an interpreter on Thursday, the Northampton bus driver said when Ms Kosser came out of the house he went to speak to her.

"All I can remember is that she ran towards me and I ran towards her.

"I heard screams. From that point I went blank," he said.

He told his barrister, Diana Ellis QC, he did not remember producing the knife and assaulting her.

Giving evidence, Mr Mahmood said Ms Kosser was his first cousin and they had an arranged marriage.

At the end of 2011 Ms Kosser mentioned the name of a colleague, Zaheer Hussain, who worked with her at Bedford Job Centre to Mr Mahmood.

Mr Mahmood said in January 2012 he had told Ms Kosser she could have a divorce, and later that month he pronounced Talek - the Islamic divorce.


Ms Kosser then obtained a non-molestation order against him, claiming he had inflicted mental and physical violence on her - something he denied.

Asked about buying a knife a week before the killing he said: "I had dreamt of sending my kids to Cambridge or Oxford - for them to have a good education.

"I was feeling my kids would be destroyed. I would rather kill myself and the people around them than put them through it."

He said he could not afford legal representation at court hearings over the future of the children and had joined Fathers4Justice.

On the day before the killing he said he had been in court, but sensed he had lost the case.

"My whole world had collapsed," he said.

The case continues.

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