Press and Journal

Man jailed for life for strangling his mother when asked to leave family home

A jobless son who strangled his mother to death after she asked him to leave the family home has been handed a life sentence for his “act of unusual wickedness”.

Majid Butt, 51, pleaded guilty to murdering 71-year-old Onees Khatoon at the house they shared in Hayes, west London, on May 13.

The Old Bailey heard he walked into the local police station just half-an-hour after killing her with electrical cable, telling officers: “I came here to confess that I have strangled my mother.”

Butt claimed he acted in a “moment of madness” after his mother, who suffered from diabetes and heart problems, threatened to throw him out of the family home.

Judge Nicholas Cooke QC handed him a life sentence on Wednesday, telling him he must serve at least 15 years and 10 months in jail.

“No sentence I can pass can undo what you did. What you did do in killing your own mother, the person who brought you into this life, was an act of unusual wickedness,” the judge said.

“Everyone has a duty to care for and protect their mother. You breached that duty in the most emphatic way.

“She was vulnerable in her own home, not only by age, but also because of her medical condition.”

The court heard Butt had lived with his mother for a total of 41 years and was invited back into her house in October last year, having been asked to leave after the death of his father in 2009.

Joe Stone QC, defending, said Butt had previously been a loving and caring son, who had made her breakfast and massaged her legs when they were swollen.

“This is a tragic, spontaneous act that has been triggered in highly-charged, extreme circumstances when the background is he loved and cared for his mother over a substantial period of time,” he said in mitigation.

Butt wrote a letter from his cell in Belmarsh prison last month, saying he wanted to express his “deep” remorse for his crime and the loss felt by his three siblings and Ms Khatoon’s grandchildren.

“None of my family should have to go through such trauma caused by my moment of madness,” he said in the note read out in court.

“I accept for my crime I deserve to be punished. It is my family who are now being punished and suffering for my shameful behaviour.

“I sincerely hope and pray they can forgive me. I’m truly sorry for my actions.”