A young man in the United Kingdom has been found guilty of murdering a pregnant prostitute after he stabbed her to death in the street.
21-year-old Farooq Shah killed Romanian mother-of-one Mariana Popa whose only crime was being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Detective Inspector Darren Richards said he had already threatened and robbed a vulnerable man with a blade, and was hanging round the “looking for another victim” when he killed Ms Popa.
Emergency services were called to the area shortly after midnight to reports of an injured woman, who was found with stab wounds to the chest.
She was identified as Romanian Ms Popa, 24 – a sex worker who was in the early stages of pregnancy when she died, and also had a six-year-old daughter.
DI Richards said: “(Shah) killed Mariana because she was there, because he thought he
could get away with it. In doing so, he has deprived a young daughter of her mother.”
Investigating the murder, officers reviewed hundreds of hours of CCTV footage, some of which captured the murder taking place. Images showed Ms Popa, who had only been in the UK a number of weeks, walking along with a man on a bicycle before he is seen taking a knife from his back pocket and stabbing her twice in the chest.
He makes off on his bike, while Ms Popa collapses at a nearby shop. After tracking down Shah’s bike, police arrested him at his home in November. He was found guilty of murder, and will be sentenced later this month.