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Police had 'historic' contact with family of murdered 10 year old Sara Sharif

Surrey County Council has confirmed that a multi-agency safeguarding Rapid Review is underway while police investigate and search for Sara Sharif’s father and his partner who are believed to have fled to Pakistan.

23/08/23

Police had 'historic' contact with family of murdered 10 year old Sara Sharif

Surrey Police had “historic” contact with the family of a 10-year-old girl who was found murdered at her home earlier this month.

Det Supt Mark Chapman of Surrey Police confirmed that their contact with the family of Sara Sharif “goes back some years."

Sara Sharif was found dead after police were called to an address in Woking, at around 2.50am on 10 August, which was made by a man identifying himself as Sara’s father, Urfan Sharif. The call was said to be made from Pakistan. Sara’s mother was duly informed and continues to be supported by specially trained officers.

The post-mortem examination, which took place last Tuesday afternoon, did not establish the cause of Sara’s death and further tests are being carried out. There is no timeframe for how long these tests will take.

The post-mortem did, however, reveal that Sara had suffered multiple and extensive injuries, which are likely to have been caused over a sustained and extended period of time.

An investigation, led by Surrey Police and Sussex Police’s Major Crime Team, was launched to establish the circumstances of Sara's death, as well as a multi-agency safeguarding ‘Rapid Review’.

Detective Superintendent Mark Chapman said Surrey Police’s thoughts are with Sara’s mother and the local community at this difficult time.

“While the post-mortem has not provided us with an established cause of death at this time, the fact that we now know that Sara had suffered multiple and extensive injuries over a sustained and extended period has significantly changed the nature of our investigation, and we have widened the timescale of the focus of our enquiry.”

In a statement, Tim Oliver, Leader of Surrey County Council, said: “An investigation is underway by Surrey Police following the tragic death of 10-year-old Sara Sharif and we are working tirelessly with our safeguarding partners to gain a full understanding of the situation as quickly as possible. This is an incredibly sad situation, and our thoughts and deepest condolences are with everyone affected.

“We can confirm that, in line with standard process following the death of a child, the National Child Safeguarding Panel has been notified of the death and a multi-agency Rapid Review is underway.

“This Rapid Review will determine whether a Local Child Safeguarding Practice Review (LCSPR) is to be undertaken by the Surrey Safeguarding Children Partnership. A Local Child Safeguarding Practice Review is a statutory process, bringing together partners including the Police, health, social care and education to review practice of all agencies involved, organisational structures and learning.”

As a result of the circumstances, Surrey Police have identified three people they would like to speak to as part of the ongoing investigation into Sara’s death. Including Sara’s father, Urfan Sharif, 41, his partner Beinash Batool, 29, and Urfan’s brother, Faisal Malik, 28.

It is believed Urfan travelled to Islamabad, Pakistan, in company with his partner and his brother on Wednesday, 9 August. There were five children with them aged between a year and 13 years old.

If you have any information which could assist the investigation, contact Surrey Police via the information portal https://mipp.police.uk/operation/4523K72-PO2

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