UK: Father guilty in 'honour killing' of
Kurdish teen Tulay Goren
A Turkish Kurd was found guilty Thursday of
murdering his 15-year-old daughter more than a
decade ago, in what prosecutors said was an honour
December 17, 2009
LONDON, — A Turkish Kurd was found guilty in
Britain Thursday of murdering his 15-year-old
daughter more than a decade ago, in what prosecutors
said was an honour killing.
Mehmet Goren, described in court as a psychotic
bully who terrorised his family, faces jail for
killing his daughter Tulay because of her
relationship with an older man who belonged to a
different branch of Islam.
The London schoolgirl disappeared in January 1999,
shortly after her father told his eight-year-old son
to kiss his sister goodbye as he would never see her
again. Her body was never found.
Goren's wife Hanim, who had suffered three decades
of abuse at his hands, was among those who gave
evidence against him, weeping and screaming in the
witness box and demanding he reveal where the body
was so she could bury it.
One of his other daughters, Nuray Guler, also
testified against him, screaming: "Even animals
would not do what you have done."
Prosecution lawyer Jonathan Laidlaw told the court
that the Goren case was a "terrible reminder of what
honour-based crime can involve" and a "wake-up call"
to the existence of so-called "honour killings" in
Police had become involved with the family in the
weeks before the murder, when Goren beat up his
daughter's boyfriend, Halil Unal, then complained
about their relationship to officers and demanded
she take a virginity test.
Tulay ran away and told police her father had beaten
her and she would rather go into care than return
home, but her mother persuaded her to go back.
Mehmet Goren, who was found guilty of the 'honour
killing' murder of his 15-year-old daughter, Tulay.
Photograph: Metropolitan police/PA
15 Year Old Kurdish Girl Tulay Goren Murdered in
Goren attacked his
daughter's boyfriend for a second time just 13 days
after Tulay went missing, this time with a hatchet,
and it was while in hospital that Unal reported his
But police failed to put two and two together and it
was two months before they began to suspect Tulay
had been murdered. They submitted a file to
prosecutors in 2000 but were told there was not
enough evidence for charges.
Goren was finally arrested in 2008, along with his
two brothers, after a review. Both his brothers were
cleared of wrongdoing in court Thursday.
An ethnic Kurd from Elbistan in Turkey, Goren had
moved to Britain claiming asylum in 1996. He was
jailed in 2000 for his hatchet attack on his
daughter's boyfriend but escaped deportation because
his family all lived in Britain.
The 49-year-old admitted hitting his daughter and
wife but denied murder, saying he still believed
Tulay was alive and "will turn up one day".
Father guilty in 'honour
killing' of Kurdish teen Tulay Goren
Mehmet Goren, 49, is a
heavy-gambling, convicted robber with links to a
militant of Kurdish rebel organisation.
The hypocrite claimed to be a doting father, who
lovingly cared for his children, who had been
imprisoned for campaigning for women's rights in
But he was exposed as a violent, intimidating figure
prepared to use violence to get his own way.
Just days after he murdered his daughter, he
attacked her boyfriend Halil Unal with an axe. He
had previously beaten him up and trashed his office
and threatened him on numerous occasions.
He said: "You ------- come here and I will see how
you measure up to me."
"I am not giving my
daughter to you and if you should come around here
just think about what you will get."
In court he also admitted beating his wife and
giving his son a slap for wearing low-slung jeans.
Goren said he escaped from Turkey to London in May
1996 after years of torture and imprisonment for
being a member of the Revolutionary People's Union,
a banned Marxist political party.
He insisted he did not believe in the honour code
and told how he was regularly arrested and tortured
for being a political activist fighting for women's'
rights in Turkey.
He said: "We believed that men and women should be
equal. One is not superior to the other."
He had in fact served a series of prison sentences
in Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
He was imprisoned in Saudi Arabia for robberies
carried out on behalf of the Kurdish rebel group PKK
(The Worker's Party of Kurdistan),www.ekurd.netwho
fight for independence within Turkey.
He joined his family in London in 1996, but
struggled to adapt to life in the UK.
He flitted between part time work cleaning in fish
and chip shops in Woodford Green, working at KFC in
Bury St Edmund's, Suffolk and another stint living
in Crawley, West Sussex.
But anything he earned was gambled away in Turkish
cafes in north and east London. His wife Hanim was
even forced to hide money from him so she could pay
the bills and support the family.
The tyrant made life "hell" for daughters Tulay,
Nuray, now 29, and Hatice, who died in a car crash
in 2006 aged 20, and only son Tuncay, now 19.
Nuray said: "This person called my father had
nothing to do with us.
"As long as I have known myself he made life hell
After seeing his eldest daughter Nuray holding hands
with her fiance before their marriage in 1998,
Mehmet was so disgusted he went home and drank
bleach and said he "wanted to die".
He needed hospital treatment before being given the
She said: "He said that I was too young, that he was
not the right sort of person and that this would
definitely not happen. He was opposing silently."
An order was made for Goren's deportation after his
conviction for wounding with intent for the attack
Mr Unal. He was jailed for seven years, lowered to
five years on appeal.
During this time he appealed the deportation notice
and was allowed to stay in the country.
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