Police in Sydney, Australia, broke into the home of Iranian couple Amir Darbanou and his wife Nasrin Abek on the morning of Thursday 29 September after Nasrin’s father became concerned for her safety. On entering the apartment in the affluent Sydney suburb of Potts Point they found that Nasrin had been murdered during the night. Darbanou, 42, was allegedly enraged that his wife had converted to Christianity and killed the 35-year-old hairdresser in a frenzied knife attack.
Darbanou is said to have stalked his wife previous to the night of the fatal assault, seemingly suspicious of her activities. In the small hours of the night, neighbours heard screams but then there was silence. According to reports, it was after this that Darbanou called Nasrin’s father in Iran to tell him that she was dead.
Nasrin’s father made several anguished phone calls to Sydney police, eventually persuading them to investigate. At 6.20am on Thursday morning, the police forced entry into the building and discovered Nasrin’s body. Darbanou was arrested and appeared before Sydney’s Central Local Court on Friday 30 September. He did not enter a plea or apply for bail and was remanded into police custody.
Police said that there was no known history of domestic violence between the couple, who had been living in Australia for four years on temporary bridging visas.
When Muslims leave Islam, they are liable to suffer serious consequences from within their family or the wider Muslim community. They can expect to be ostracised at the very least, disowned and cut off from their family and children. They often receive death threats or threats of violence. All too often, as in this case, those threats are carried out. This is in line with Islamic sharia which treats apostasy as treason and specifies a death sentence for adult males who leave Islam. Some schools of sharia lay down the same punishment for an adult female apostate.