By Laura Moulden
A mother has been sentenced to a minimum of 17 years in jail for beating her young son to death after he failed to memorise pages of the Koran.
Thirty-three-year-old Sara Ege was yesterday found guilty of murdering her son, Yaseen, before setting his body alight in an attempt to conceal the evidence.
When the boy’s body was discovered he initially appeared to have burned to death. However, tests later revealed that the seven-year-old had been dead for hours beforehand.
After a series of contradictory claims and counterclaims, during which she attempted to implicate her husband, Mrs Ege confessed to the murder of her son at Cardiff Crown Court in Wales on Monday (January 7th).
As he sentenced her to life imprisonment, the presiding Mr Justice Wyn Williams commented that in many respects she had been a “devoted and caring mum”.
The court heard that Yaseen had suffered significant abdominal injuries, including non-accidental fractures. Evidence of historical abuse was also present on his body.
On the day he died, the child had been kept from school in order to dedicate his time to studying the Koran. Mrs Ege told the court of how after she had beaten him, her son collapsed while still murmuring extracts from the religious text. She left and when she returned 10 minutes later, witnessed his final moments.
Realising that she would be held accountable for his injuries, she then used barbecue gel to burn Yaseen’s body in an attempt to hide the evidence.
Confessing that anger often led to her becoming out of control, Mrs Ege admitted that the unprovoked attacks she inflicted on her son had become so frequent that she had started to make secret vows with herself to refrain from hurting him.
Agreeing with defence arguments regarding her state of mind, Mr Justice Wyn Williams said he accepted that the mother had suffered from depression and had been a victim of domestic violence.
“In killing your son you abused a precious relationship of trust which does and should exist between a parent and a child.
“You killed your own son. At the time of the killing he was particularly vulnerable because of his age and because of his relative physical frailty,” he said.
The judge ruled that he regarded the last two-and-half years that Mrs Ege had spent in a series of secure units as “semi-incarceration,” which would therefore count towards her 17-year minimum term sentence.
Ms Ege’s husband has been cleared of allowing the death of a child by failing to provide protection from abuse.