Khondkar Faihi Elahi murder: Shahab Ahmed pleads not guilty
A man who had an affair with a woman before she was fatally stabbed 14 times by her husband in Sydney earlier received a phone call from him saying “I hope you’re happy … I am leaving home”, a judge has been told.
Shahab Ahmed has pleaded not guilty to murdering his wife of five-and-a-half years, Khondkar Faihi Elahi, in their Parramatta unit in February 2017, claiming the partial defence of substantial impairment by abnormality of mind. The 35-year-old man’s plea of guilty to manslaughter was not accepted by the Crown.
At Ahmed’s judge-alone trial in the NSW Supreme Court on Tuesday, Omar Khan admitted to having an affair with Ms Elahi from July 2015.
“There was kissing. Was it passionate kissing?” Crown prosecutor Sean Hughes asked
“That is correct, but not all the time, especially not when we are in public places,” Mr Khan replied.
He said they held hands “quite often” and exchanged gifts but did not have sexual intercourse.
Mr Khan said he’d known Ahmed since 1999 and the two men and their wives built up a strong friendship, which saw the couples holidaying in Bangladesh together.
He got Ms Elahi a job but was visited at work by Ahmed in April 2015 and accused of causing marital problems.
The Crown says Ahmed expressed concerns to his GP at this time of infidelity between his wife and Mr Khan.
Mr Khan said on Tuesday he’d received a phone call from Ahmed in September 2016, during which he stated: “I hope you’re happy. You can come over. I am leaving home.”
The Crown says on February 18, 2017, Ahmed demanded to see his wife’s mobile phone, dragging her around the house before coming across recent messages and reaching for a knife in the kitchen.
Ms Elahi suffered 14 stab wounds.
Mr Hughes said the judge would also hear evidence that Ahmed had earlier made a number of inquiries “about the various punishments” for infidelity, according to Islam, and “had turned his mind to punishing his wife”.
He said given the nature and number of injuries, the weapon used and Ahmed’s actions immediately after the attack — such as posting on Facebook and smoking a cigarette before calling triple-0 — Justice Monika Schmidt would be satisfied “he intended to kill”.
Defence barrister Avni Djemal said Ahmed accepted legal and moral responsibility for the death of his wife.
“The accused’s case is that at the time … he was substantially impaired by depressive illness,” Mr Djemal said.
He said the pair met online and it was “not a marriage by arrangement, it was a marriage of love”, adding that Ahmed’s reaction on the night of the stabbing was “out of character”.
The accused’s boss, Irfan Ali, testified that in the days before the incident, Ahmed said his wife wanted a divorce but “he didn’t want to”.
The trial continues.
Originally published as Wife had affair before stabbing death