Woman accused of murdering two children in house fire has "nothing to hide", court hears

Woman accused of murdering two children in house fire has

Woman accused of murdering two children in house fire has "nothing to hide", court hears

First published in News

A MUM accused of murder has told jurors she had no idea about a plan to set fire to an East Oxford house 17 years ago.

Fiaz Munshi, 38, denies murdering two children in an arson attack in Magdalen Road in 1997.

And she said she returned to the UK from Pakistan in 2004 as she had "nothing to hide".

The mother-of-four, who began giving evidence today, admitted she was in one of two cars that travelled to Oxford on the night of the blaze but thought the group was going to have a fight.

She said her boyfriend Haq Nawaz - who was convicted of the murders in 1998 - had forced her to come along.

She said: "I agreed because I was scared of him."

The prosecution say Munshi wanted to set fire to the house after a bitter argument with the Khan family that lived there.

Anum Khan, eight, and her brother Majid, 15, died in the fire.

But Munshi said she thought she was going to fight their elder sister Shehnaz Akthar that night, adding: "I would have pulled her hair and punched her but nothing more."

She also said Nawaz told told her to lie to the police after the fire.

The jury heard Munshi left the UK for Pakistan three months after the fire to be with her ill father.

She said she was forced to marry and could only return to England in 2004 after she had two children.

But the former Donnington Middle School pupil said was not afraid of returning despite her sister Riaz being convicted of manslaughter.

She said: "Why should I not come back? I have not done anything wrong, I have got nothing to hide.

"I am not guilty of murder."

The trial continues.

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