'Daughter will pay', mother told
A mother and her lesbian lover killed her "evil" daughter after getting caught up in a bizarre web of fictional characters on Facebook and text, a court heard.
Through her set of male alter egos, Kiki Muddar, 43, controlled and seduced Polly Chowdhury, 35, turning her against her eight-year-old daughter Ayesha Ali, jurors were told.
Muddar expressed her hatred for the innocent child in a series of phone calls and texts and even pretended to have cancer, blaming her for making her condition worse, the court heard.
On August 29 2013, Ayesha was found dead in her bedroom after suffering more than 50 injuries to her head, body and limbs, including carpet burns and a bite mark on her shoulder, jurors were told.
That morning, Muddar had dialled 999 and reported Chowdhury had tried to kill herself and was in the bath and that Ayesha was dead.
Paramedics discovered the body of the little girl "cold and stiff" lying along the side of her bed dressed only in a pair of pants. The cause of her death was a head injury.
Chowdhury held her head in her hands and wept in the dock beside Muddar at the start of their murder trial at the Old Bailey.
Prosecutor Richard Whittam QC said: "At the core of this case is the relationship between Kiki Muddar and Polly Chowdhury.
"To say that their relationship was unconventional is a gross understatement. It was complex and involved fictional characters."
The pair struck up a close friendship when they lived near to each other and in 2012, Muddar moved into Chowdhury's home forcing her husband to sleep downstairs and leading to the eventual breakdown of the marriage.
Mr Whittam said there was "ample evidence" of Muddar's strength of feeling towards Chowdhury and her attitude towards Ayesha expressed through thousands of text messages, Facebook entries and telephone calls.
He said Chowdhury had fallen in love with Muddar's fictional Facebook character Jimmy Chowdhury and a sexual relationship developed between the women with the younger thinking she was having sex with her soulmate "through the medium of Kiki".
But the prosecutor said: "He is a fiction pieced together by Kiki Muddar. He existed only on Facebook, by text message or through Kiki Muddar herself.
"There was a photograph of a man she had placed on the Facebook page but that was not Jimmy Chowdhury. Polly Chowdhury never met him nor did she speak to him yet it appears Polly Chowdhury fell in love with this fictional Jimmy Chowdhury."
Muddar was also behind a character called Skyman - a spiritual Muslim man - who only communicated by text and who Chowdhury "would try to act in a way that was approved of by him or to please him", jurors were told.
Added to the "complexity", Muddar claimed to receive text messages from a former lover who she claims to have died in the London riots.
Mr Whittam said she even claimed to have cancer "to get sympathy" from Chowdhury, suggesting her daughter's behaviour could not only affect her health but that of Jimmy.
In reality, they were one and the same person and Muddar did not in fact have cancer, jurors were told.
In the months leading up to the killing, Muddar repeatedly communicated her hatred of the child to her lover, with texts such as: "You have no right to ever love or like your evil daughter", "Your daughter will pay" and "Your daughter was staring at your soulmate why was she not disciplined", the court heard.
In a phone call to a friend, Muddar described Ayesha as a "witch" and threatened to drown her and go to prison, jurors were told.
Before Ayesha's death at the family home in Broomfield Road, Chadwell Heath, Essex, a neighbour heard a child sobbing and screaming in the night, the court heard.
Muddar, of Green Lane, Ilford, Essex, and Chowdhury, of Broomfield Road, Chadwell Heath, Romford, Essex, deny murder, manslaughter and causing or allowing the death of a child between March 1 and August 29 2013.
The day before Ayesha was found dead, Muddar texted Chowdhury at home and asked: "Has something happened? My hearts going mental?"
She responded: "No nothing happened kiks. Had to make her clean the toilet and side shelves properly again. She's doing the floor now."
Mr Whittam suggested the exchange indicated that the girl was still alive but at 5.20am the next day Chowdhury was looking at suicide websites.
At 11.30am Muddar told emergency services: "Please hurry, I've just come home and my friend is in the bath, she cut her wrists ... she's just told me that her daughter tried to drown herself and I've just been in there and I, I don't think she's breathing."
The operator asked if she was not concerned about the child and Muddar responded: "Ayesha is always naughty. She never makes her bed and she is a problem child."
She added: "She was a naughty child and Mum thought she was possessed by the Devil."
Paramedics who arrived at the scene found Ayesha had been dead for some time.
The court heard a series of notes were found in the house signed by Chowdhury including one to the fictional Jimmy declaring her love ending: "I will always love you forever and ever".
In a note to Muddar read: "Kiks I don't know how I can ever repay you for everything you did for me and know I will never get the chance. You were there for me through everything when no-one else was."
Another letter dated August 28 2013, began: "I Polly Chowdhury am writing this letter to let everyone know that I have taken my life and Ayesha's life. I am writing this of my own free will."
In a police interview, Muddar said she left the house at 5pm on August 28 to spend the night at her parents' house.
But Mr Whittam suggested the evidence would show she did not leave until 9pm that day - after Ayesha was fatally injured.
Concluding his opening remarks, he told the jurors that the defendants had an "unusual relationship" and one or both of them were responsible for the fatal injuries to Ayesha.
The trial was adjourned until 10am tomorrow.